Most medical experts recommend a diet that’s low in saturated fat and calories, while being moderate to high in complex carbohydrates. The Dietary Guidelines for Americans, developed by the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) and the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), outlines several guidelines for better health:
- Eat a variety of foods to get the energy, protein, vitamins, minerals and fiber you need for good health.
- Balance the food you eat with physical activity – maintain or improve your weight to reduce your chances of having high blood pressure, heart disease, a stroke, certain cancers and diabetes.
- Select a diet low in sugar. A diet high in sugar has too many calories and too few nutrients for most people.
- Choose a diet low in salt to help reduce your risk of high blood pressure.
- Eat plenty of grain products, vegetables and fruits to provide you with needed vitamins, minerals, fiber and complex carbohydrates, and to help lower your intake of fat.
- Choose a diet low in fat, saturated fat and cholesterol to reduce your risk of heart attack and certain types of cancer, and to help you maintain a healthy weight.
- Drink alcohol in moderation. Alcohol supplies calories, but little or no nutrients.