Nutrition Information

What is a "Healthy Diet"?

The Dietary Guidelines describe a healthy diet as one that:

Emphasizes fruits, vegetables, whole grains, and fat-free or low-fat milk and milk products;

Includes lean meats, poultry, fish, beans, eggs, and nuts; and

Is low in saturated fats, trans fats, cholesterol, salt (sodium), and added sugars.

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The recommendations in the Dietary Guidelines and in MyPlate are for the general public over 2 years of age. MyPlate is not a therapeutic diet for any specific health condition. Individuals with a chronic health condition should consult with a health care provider to determine what dietary pattern is appropriate for them.

MyPlate helps individuals use the Dietary Guidelines to:

  • Make smart choices from every food group.
  • Find balance between food and physical activity.
  • Get the most nutrition out of calories.
  • Stay within daily calorie needs.

Balancing Calories

  • Enjoy your food, but eat less.
  • Avoid oversized portions.

Foods to Increase

  • Make half your plate fruits and vegetables.
  • Make at least half your grains whole grains.
  • Switch to fat-free or low-fat (1%) milk.

Foods to Reduce

  • Compare sodium in foods like soup, bread, and frozen meals; choose the foods with lower numbers.
  • Drink water instead of sugary drinks.