The following is a brief summary of the 2005 Dietary Guidelines from the U.S. Departments of Health and Human Services (HHS) and Agriculture (USDA). Note that the next guidelines will be updated in 2010…and that the guidelines have been jointly issued by the the USDA and HHS Secretaries every 5 years since 1980. Rather than define the past 25 years as particularly revolutionary, I would suggest that the USDA and HHS have become more refined in their recommendations. The 2005 version of the report has evolved into more of a science fair report, with charts and evidence that backs up the original guidlines. Here, I make it a little easier for your to understand what in the world they are talking about.
1. Aim for an average 2,000-calorie per day diet.
2. Balance calorie intake with exercise.
3. Get fewer than 10% of calories from saturated fatty acids and avoid trans fatty acids.
4. Eat 2 cups of of fruit and 2 1/2 cups of vegetables per day
5. Eat 3 or more ounces of whole-grain products per day.
6. Eat 3 ounces a day of cooked meat, poultry or fish.
7. Eat 3 cups per day of fat-free or low-fat milk or milk products.
8. Limit total fat to 20-35% of calories.
9. Limit salt to one teaspoon a day.
10. Limit cholesterol intake to less than 300 mg/day.
Certain people should not drink any alcohol.
Women should drink one alcoholic drink per day or less, two or less per day for men.
Lower intake of saturated and trans fats, cholesterol, added sugars, and salt
Exercise regularly and reduce sedentary activities.
Choose “good” fats such as fish, nuts, and vegetable oils containing polyunsaturated and monounsaturated fatty acids.
To try buy lean, low-fat, or fat-free meats, poultry, dry beans, and milk or milk products.