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Dietary Guidelines

Consume a variety of nutrient rich foods and beverages within and among the basic food groups while choosing foods that limit the intake of saturated and trans fats, cholesterol, added sugar, salt and alcohol.

Meet recommended intakes  by adopting a balanced diet, such as the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) Food Guide or the Dietary Approaches to Stop Hypertension (DASH) Eating Plan.

physical activity

Physical Activity

  • Engage in regular physical activity and reduce sedentary activities to promote health, psychological well-being, and a healthy body weight
  • To reduce the risk of chronic disease in adulthood, engage in at least 30 minutes of moderate intensity physical activity daily
  • To help manage body weight and prevent gradual, unhealthy  weight gain, engage in at least 60 minutes of moderate to vigorous activity while watching your calories on most day of the week
  • Achieve physical fitness by including cardiovascular conditioning, stretching exercises for flexibility, and resistance exercises or calisthenics for muscle strength and endurance

Food Groups

  • Consume a sufficient amount of fruits and vegetables while staying within energy needs. Two cups per day are recommended
  • Choose a variety of fruits and veggies. In particular select from all five vegetable subgroups (dark greens, orange, legumes, starchy vegetables, and other vegetables)
  • Consume 3 or more whole grain products per day
  • Consume 3 cups per day of fat-free or low fat milk or equivalent milk products


  • Consume less than 10% of calories from saturated fatty acids and less than 300 mg/day of cholesterol and keep trans fatty consumption low
  • Keep total fat intake between 20-35% of calories, with most sources coming from fish, nuts, and vegetable oil
  • Choose lean, low fat meat, poultry, dry beans, and milk products
  • Limit intake of fats and oils high in saturated and/or fatty acids


  • Choose fiber-rich fruits, vegetable, and whole grains
  • Prepare foods and beverages with little added sugars or caloric sweeteners

Sodium and Potassium

  • Consume less than 2,300mg (approximately 1 teaspoon of salt or sodium per day
  • Choose and prepare food with little salt. At the same time, consume potassium rich foods such as fruits and vegetables

Alcoholic Beverages

  • Those who choose to drink alcoholic beverages should do so sensibly and in moderation; defined as the consumption of up to one drink per day for women and up to two drinks per day for men