It does give us a place to start, however. Check how you’re doing with each of these core elements of a healthful dietary pattern: Vegetables of all colors and types, including beans and lentils. Fruits, especially whole fruits. Grains, half which are whole grains. Dairy, including fat-free or low-fat milk, yogurt, and cheese, and/or lactose-free versions and fortified soy alternatives. Protein foods, including lean meats, poultry, and eggs; seafood; beans, peas, and lentils; nuts, seeds, and soy products. Oils, including vegetable oils and oils in seafood, avocados and nuts.
With the science must come practice, say experts. Guess I’ll reach for a banana instead of chips. Mix up my protein foods to include beans, lentils and peanut butter as well as poultry, lean meat and cheese. Choose a fish-based meal at least a couple times a week. And enjoy my wine in moderation.
Your goals may be different. Find the dietary pattern that fits your needs and calorie limit in this 9th edition of the Dietary Guidelines for Americans, 2020-2025. DietaryGuidelines.gov. Let’s make every bite count.
Barbara Quinn is a registered dietitian and certified diabetes educator affiliated with Community Hospital of the Monterey Peninsula. Email firstname.lastname@example.org.