General guidelines for a healthy diet have been developed even though daily nutritional requirements, including those for essential nutrients, vary depending on age, sex, height, weight, physical activity, and the rate at which the body burns calories (metabolic rate). Recommended dietary allowances for protein Proteins Carbohydrates, proteins, and fats are the main types of macronutrients in food (nutrients that are required daily in large quantities). They supply 90% of the dry weight of the diet and 100%... read more , vitamins Vitamins , and minerals Minerals are periodically published by The Food and Nutrition Board of the National Academy of Sciences–National Research Council and the U.S. Department of Agriculture. These allowances are intended to meet the needs of healthy people.
The U.S. Department of Agriculture also publishes MyPlate, a web site that helps people develop a healthy eating style and make healthy food choices that suit their individual needs.
In general, authorities recommend that people
Follow a healthy dietary pattern at every life stage
Customize and enjoy nutrient-dense food and beverage choices to reflect personal preferences, cultural tradition, and budgetary considerations
Focus on meeting food-group needs with nutrient-dense foods and beverages, and stay within calorie limits
Adequate fluid intake is also important.
Eliminating trans fats from the diet is recommended. When possible, monounsaturated fats and polyunsaturated fats, including the polyunsaturated fats called omega-3 fats, should be substituted for saturated fats and trans fats.
The following English-language resources may be useful. Please note that THE MANUAL is not responsible for the content of these resources.
Dietary Guidelines for Americans 2020-2025: U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) and U.S. Department of Health and Human Services nutrition recommendations by life stage, from birth through older adulthood
MyPlate Plan: USDA's food guidance system promoting a healthy eating routine with a variety of fruits, vegetables, grains, protein foods, and dairy and fortified soy alternatives