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healthy diet

A healthy diet is a diet that helps to maintain or improve overall health. A healthy diet provides the body with essential nutrition: fluid, macronutrients, micronutrients, and adequate calories.

A healthy diet may contain fruits, vegetables, and whole grains, and includes little to no processed food and sweetened beverages.

The requirements for a healthy diet can be met from a variety of plant-based and animal-based foods, although a non-animal source of vitamin B12 is needed for those following a vegan diet.

Various nutrition guides are published by medical and governmental institutions to educate individuals on what they should be eating to be healthy.

Nutrition facts labels are also mandatory in some countries to allow consumers to choose between foods based on the components relevant to health.

The Dietary Guidelines for Americans by the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) recommends three healthy patterns of diet, summarized in the table below, for a 2000 kcal diet.

It emphasizes both health and environmental sustainability and a flexible approach.

The committee that drafted it wrote: “The major findings regarding sustainable diets were that a diet higher in plant-based foods, such as vegetables, fruits, whole grains, legumes, nuts, and seeds, and lower in calories and animal-based foods is more health-promoting and is associated with less environmental impact than is the current U.S. diet.

This pattern of eating can be achieved through a variety of dietary patterns, including the “Healthy U.S.-style Pattern”, the “Healthy Vegetarian Pattern” and the “Healthy Mediterranean-style Pattern”. Food group amounts are per day unless noted per week.

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