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Weight Loss & Diet Plans

How Does Your Diet Stack Up?

Many of us are short on important nutrients, survey shows
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The Latest Findings continued...

To make sure your diet has all the nutrients you need, a great place to start is with the U.S. Department of Agriculture's "My Pyramid" at www.mypyramid.gov, along with the 2005 Dietary Guidelines.

Another great start: Breakfast on a bowl of high-fiber cereal with skim milk, plus a glass of orange juice (this will help meet your needs for vitamin C, calcium, potassium, and fiber).

Beyond that, go out of your way to eat tasty foods that are rich in all or most of the four main nutrients the American diet is lacking. Below, you'll find top food sources of each, along with some "super foods" that contain more than one of them; 10 easy tips to improve your diet; and a couple of recipes to try.

Top Food Sources of Vitamin E

The Dietary Reference Intake for vitamin E men and women age 31 and over is 15 milligrams TE (alpha-tocopherol equivalent) per day.

Food
Milligrams (mg)
1/4 cup sunflower seed kernels
17
1/4 cup filberts/hazelnuts
8
1 tablespoon hazelnut oil
6
1 tablespoon almond oil
5
1/4 cup peanuts
2.5
1/4 cup pistachios
2.2
1/4 cup almonds
2.2
1 cup tomato sauce
3.4
2 tablespoons peanut butter
3.3
1 cup Swiss chard cooked
3.3
1 tablespoons canola oil
2.9
1 cup greens, cooked (collard, mustard)
2.8
2 tablespoons wheat germ
2.6
1 mango
2.3
2 cups raw spinach
2
1 high omega-3 egg (Eggland's Best)
2
3.5 ounces steamed clams
2
1 cup broccoli, cooked
1.8
3.5 ounces canned white tuna in water
1.6
1 cup papaya cubes
1.6

Top Food Sources of Vitamin A

The Dietary Reference Intake for women aged 31 and over is 700 RE (retinol equivalents). The Dietary Reference Intake for men aged 31 and over is 900.

Food
RE
1/2 cup cooked carrots
1,300-1900
1/4 cup canned pumpkin
1,350
1 small baked sweet potato
1,310
1/2 cup butternut squash, cooked
857
1 mango
805
1/2 cup spinach, cooked
739
1 cup cantaloupe cubes
561
1/2 cup greens (mustard, collard, beet)
260-500
1/2 cup kale, cooked
481
2 cups raw spinach
404
1 cup broccoli, cooked
212-348
2 cups Romaine lettuce
292
1 cup vegetable-tomato juice
283
1/2 cup Swiss chard, cooked
275
1/2 cup chopped red sweet peppers
212
2 cups loose leaf lettuce
212
2 fresh apricots
183
3 1/2 ounces steamed clams
171
1/2 cup artichoke hearts, cooked
149
3 1/2 ounces oysters
146
1/2 cup tomato sauce
120
4 dried apricot halves
101

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