Dietary Guidelines for Adults in Australia (2003)
The NHMRC Dietary Guidelines for Australian Adults are based on the best available scientific evidence and provide information for health professionals and the general population about healthy food choices. The use of the guidelines will encourage healthy lifestyles that will
minimise the risk of the development of diet-related diseases within the Australian population.
The dietary guidelines highlight the groups of foods and lifestyle patterns that promote good nutrition and health. They are no longer listed by number as no guideline is considered more important than another. Each guideline deals with a key health issue and is like a piece of the good health puzzle.
The guidelines are as follows:
Enjoy a wide variety of nutritious foods
- Eat plenty of vegetables, legumes and fruit
- Eat plenty of cereals (including breads, rice, pasta and noodles), preferably wholegrain
- Include lean meat, fish, poultry and/or alternatives
- Include milks, yoghurts, cheeses and/or alternatives. Reduced-fat varieties should be chosen, where possible
- Drink plenty of water
and take care to
- Limit saturated fat and moderate total fat intake
- Choose foods low in salt
- Limit your alcohol intake if you choose to drink
- Consume only moderate amounts of sugars and foods containing added sugars
Prevent weight gain: be physically active and eat according to your energy needs
Care for your food: prepare and store it safely
Encourage and support breastfeeding
These guidelines are not listed in order of importance
Each guideline deals with an issue that is key to optimal health.
Two of the guidelines relate to the quantity and quality of the food eaten, and encourage consumption of the right types of foods in the right amounts to meet the body’s nutrient needs and to reduce the risk of chronic disease. Given the epidemic of obesity currently observed in Australia, one guideline specifically relates to the need to be active and to avoid overeating.
Importantly, one guideline stresses the need to be vigilant about food safety, and, in view of the increasing awareness of the importance of early nutrition, a further guidelines encourages individuals to support and promote breastfeeding.
Published: January 2011
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