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Nutrition 101

Category: Patient Stories
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Fundamentals of healthy eating

Eating a healthy, balanced diet can be relatively simple, based on the following recommendations from the United States Department of Agriculture's 2010 Dietary Guidelines for Americans:*

Tips for healthy eating

  • Enjoy your food, but eat less
  • Avoid oversized portions
  • Make half your plate fruits and vegetables
  • Use whole grains for at least half your grains
  • Switch to fat-free or low-fat (1%) milk
  • Choose lower-sodium options for soup, bread and frozen meals
  • Drink water instead of sugary drinks

Recommended amounts**

  • Carbohydrates 45-65 percent of your daily calorie intake (900-1,300 calories or 225-325 grams of carbohydrate)
  • Protein 10-35 percent of your daily calorie intake (200-700 calories or 50-175 grams of protein)
  • Fat 20-35 percent of your daily calorie intake (400-700 calories)
  • Sodium not to exceed 2,300 milligrams per day; 1,500 milligrams per day if you are African-American, age 51 or older, or have high blood pressure, diabetes or chronic kidney disease

"It's important to keep in mind that factors such as age, medical issues, family health history, activity level, and gender impact dietary needs," says Stacy Colich, St. Luke's clinical dietitian and diabetes educator. "To find out what's right for you, talk with your doctor or dietitian about developing a plan that will meet your personal needs and goals."

You can learn more about healthy eating habits at
**Based on a 2,000 calorie diet