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    Dietary Guidelines for Good Health

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    Topic Overview

    To prevent disease, the Dietary Guidelines for Americans recommend eating lots of fruits, vegetables, whole grains, and low-fat or nonfat dairy products. The guidelines also emphasize:

    These guidelines from the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) and the United States Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) are updated every 5 years to promote health and reduce risk for major chronic diseases.

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    Under the Affordable Care Act, many health insurance plans will cover preventive care services, including obesity screening and nutrition counseling, at no cost to you. Learn more.

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    Key recommendations for the general public include the following.1

    Balancing calories

    • Enjoy your food, but eat less.
    • Avoid oversized portions.
    • Prevent and/or reduce overweight and obesity through healthy eating and physical activity.
    • Control your total calorie intake to manage your weight. For people who are overweight or obese, this means eating fewer calories from foods and drinks.
    • Increase your physical activity, and reduce the time you are not moving.
    • Eat enough calories, but not too many, during each stage of life-childhood, adolescence, adulthood, pregnancy and breast-feeding, and older age.
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    WebMD Medical Reference from Healthwise

    Last Updated: November 14, 2014
    This information is not intended to replace the advice of a doctor. Healthwise disclaims any liability for the decisions you make based on this information.
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