food selection table

It’s hard to know what you’re supposed to eat, there are so many people claiming that they have the answers about your health and nutritional needs. This table will help you understand the Food Pyramid. See Nutrition for ‘The Pyramid’ diagram. The key with most of this: Don’t eat anything WHITE: e.g. white rice, bread that is not made from 100% whole wheat, pasta that is not from whole wheat and NO white potatoes, chose yams instead or eliminate them completely.

  The Nutrients Some Choices How Much Why

Whole Grain Breads, Brown Rice other Cereals

(This does not mean the kind in a box, it means oatmeal, cream of wheat, etc.)

Carbohydrates lots of fiber, B vitamins, potassium, iron, selenium, some protein, calcium, vitamin E. Phytochemicals. All breads that are NOT made from white flour, pasta, rice, noodles, breakfast cereals, oats and grains. Aim for three daily servings of whole grain types. Watch the added fat. Have 6–11 servings daily (according to appetite). A serving is: 1 slice of bread; a bowl of cereal; half a bagel, 3 crackers, half a cup of cooked rice or pasta. Most people would benefit from eating more of these foods. They are nutritious and filling, Make them a part of each meal and use them as snacks in moderation.
Fruits & Vegetables Vitamin C, folic acid, beta carotene, fiber, magnesium, potassium, some carbohydrate, iron, calcium. Phytochemicals. All types – fresh, frozen, dried and juices can count. Choose a variety of different types and colors each day. Canned fruit has lost a lot of it’s vitamins in the canning process. Aim for at least 5 – 6 portions every day. A portion is: 2 tbsp vegetables, 2–3 tbsp cooked fruit, side salad, medium fruit, glass of juice, 1 tbsp or more of dried fruit. Diets rich in fruit and vegetables can help protect against heart disease, help weight control, maintain a strong immune system and keep your bowels regular. They are a good alternative to sweets.
Milk & Dairy foods & alternatives, such as Soy Products Calcium, protein, vitamin B2, B12, zinc, vitamins A & D. Phytochemicals in the soy-based foods. Go for lower fat varieties; reduced-fat milks, yogurts, cheeses. Choose tofu,  calcium-fortified soy milk or soy yogurt. Avoid hard cheeses. Have 2–3 servings daily. A serving is: 200 ml milk/soy milk, a cup of yogurt, and if you must.. 30 g hard cheese, e.g. cheddar. A good calcium intake throughout life (especially during adolescence and your early 20s) helps reduce the risk of osteoporosis! (I know, I messed that up).
Meat, Fish & alternatives Protein, selenium, B vitamins, zinc, magnesium, iron, potassium. Phytochemicals in beans, lentils, nuts, seeds, tofu. Lean and trimmed meats, poultry, all types of fish, eggs, beans, split peas and lentils, tempeh, soy beans, and meat substitutes (e.g. TVP). Eat moderate amounts, e.g. 2–3 servings a day. A serving is: 50–75 g meat, 100 g fish, 1–2 eggs, 3–4 tbsp cooked beans, 50 g nuts. You will get plenty of protein in your diet, so there is no need for large meat portions. B vitamins promote a healthy nervous system and other functions.
Foods rich in fat and/or sugar – They taste so darn good! Fat and sugar, with some essential fats, vitamins, minerals. Phytochemicals in virgin olive oil, canola oil and chocolate. Unsaturated oils, e.g. olive, rapeseed, sunflower, soy and their spreads. Use fats sparingly when preparing food. Eat small amounts. Look for lower-fat alternatives to spreads, salad dressings and fast food. High saturated fat may raise cholesterol levels. Frequent sugar intake may strain the your immune system and slow down metabolism.

Thanks to Darla W., RD for the Food Table. Darla is from St. Petersburg, FL, USA

Try the Calorie Calculator and visit Fabulous Foods for You!

How To Have Better Sexual Health Through Proper Nutrition

Amy - Teen's Health Expert

By Amy - Teen's Health Expert

Discover the dedicated author behind Teen Health Secrets, an experienced expert committed to providing in-depth knowledge and guidance on various aspects of teen health, ensuring young individuals lead healthy, informed lives.