Eating a balanced diet will improve your health and reduce your risk of getting certain diseases. A balanced diet means eating plenty of fruits, vegetables, and grains. Your diet should be low in fat and cholesterol to reduce your risk of obesity and heart disease.
Food guide pyramids can help you choose a healthy, balanced diet. If you eat more foods on the bottom of the pyramid (grains, vegetables, and fruits) and less from the top (meats, dairy products, fats, oils, and sweets), you're in good shape. Here are the recommended daily servings from the food guide pyramid:
* Bread, Cereal, Rice, and Pasta: 6-11 servings
* Vegetables: 3-5 servings
* Fruit: 2-4 servings
* Milk, Yogurt, and Cheese: 2-3 servings
* Meat, Poultry, Fish, Dry Beans, Eggs, and Nuts: 2-3 servings
* Fats, Oils, and Sweets: occassionally
A serving size is smaller than you might think. Bread, for example, has a serving size of one slice, not two.
There are also ten general Food Based Dietary Guidelines in South Africa which are:
• Enjoy a variety of foods.
• Be active.
• Make starchy foods the basis of most meals.
• Eat plenty of fruit and vegetables.
• Eat dry beans, peas, lentils and soya often.
• Meat, fish, chicken, milk and eggs can be eaten every day.
• Eat fats sparingly.
• Use salt sparingly.
• Drink lots of clean, safe water.
• If you drink alcohol, drink sensibly