Choosing a healthy diet plan may require the services of a certified nutritionist, with medical input by your physician. This could entail two trips to the doctor’s office, and a number of sit-downs with the nutritionist, before you even get started.
This is the preferred way to start a healthy diet plan, especially if you are under a doctor’s care for diabetes, hypertension, or heart disease. Planning is essential to establish the don’ts, and to determine the extent of the do’s. You don’t want to regret not taking these initial steps later on.
After you get rolling with your diet plan, there would still be a need for occasional consultations with both professionals, to monitor your progress. They may make adjustment to your diet plan as you proceed toward your goal.
No healthy diet plan is complete without regular exercise. A personal trainer would be ideal, if you can afford one. But most people would rather become a member of a health spa or exercise gym, where personal trainer services are included in the membership fees. The services may not be too personal, but will suffice.
The nutritionist, doctor, and trainer could become a costly venture. In fact, it could cost you two arms and a leg to actually start a healthy diet plan. But thank heavens there is a way to keep your arms and leg, and pay almost nothing to achieve the same benefits.
The US Department of Agriculture and the Department of Health and Human Services announced the release of the 2010 Dietary Guidelines for Americans. The Dietary Guidelines is published jointly every 5 years by the Department of Agriculture (USDA), and the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS).
The Guidelines provide advice for all Americans two years and older about how to make healthy dietary choices. They are designed to reduce the risk of chronic diseases, overweight and obesity through improved nutrition and physical exercise.
The 7th edition of Dietary Guidelines for Americans places stronger emphasis on reducing calorie consumption and increasing physical activity and/or exercise, because more than one-third of children and more than two-thirds of adults in the United States are overweight or obese. This edition, like previous ones, also serves as the basis for Federal food and nutrition education programs.
Structure of Food Guides
Most countries have developed some sort of food nutrition guide, for its people, establishing a healthy diet and nutrition plan to keep the nation healthy. The guide usually consists of four to six food groups, detailing the daily serving servings for each group, and other recommendations for healthy eating.
Some food nutrition guides take the shape of a dish, a platter, or a pyramid, and are referred to as such. The USDA food nutrition guide, which depicts the Dietary Guidelines, takes the shape of a pyramid, and is called MyPyramid.
MyPyramid illustrates color triangles for each food category. Foods from the largest triangles should be eaten most often, while those from the smallest triangle eaten in small amounts.
MyPyramid Plan gives recommendations for healthy eating, by helping you choose from a assortment of foods, recommending the servings size and the number servings per day.
MyPyramid Basic Messages gives you important tips and recommendations for healthy eating, and daily exercise.
Inside MyPyramid provides detail recommendations for healthy eating, to help improve your diet plan, including data about each food group, number of calories, and physical workout.
MyPyramid Tracker offers an activity chart for entering all the foods eaten each day, and all daily physical activities performed.
This allows you to adopt good recommendations for healthy eating, and monitor your progress.
The Healthy Diet Program
MyPyramid Plan is equipped with a tool that creates a unique diet program for the individual diet planner. It utilizes age, sex, weight, height, and the level of your physical daily activity to calculate your daily recommendations. It provides the amount of each food group to include in your daily intake, and the number of calories for your diet plan.
A special worksheet is provided for documentation of your daily food intake and physical activity. Very little typing is required. You make selections from pop up menus about your daily activities. Upon request, your daily activities are compared against dietary guidelines, and some recommendations are made to improve your diet plan. The worksheet is printable. Use it as a reference guide, to construct a healthy diet plan.
MyPyramids Plan also features MyPyramid Tracker, an on line dietary and physical assessment tool that provides information on the quality of the diet and physical activity. At the click of a button, you are told whether you are eating adequately form all food groups. It also provides information about the food groups, which enables you to make better choices to design a healthy diet plan.