Here are the food groups that make up a HEALTHY DIET:
- WHOLE GRAINS: This group includes brown rice, oats, corn, pasta, potatoes...these are great for energy. Whole grains provide protein and fiber, along with complex carbohydrates for energy. They are a good source of B vitamins and minerals. Whole-grain breads, millet, barley, bulgur, oatmeal and quinoa are all great choices. Aim for 5 or more servings per day. Serving size: 1/2 cup oatmeal; 1 slice of bread, 1/2 cup of brown rice, 1 cup of pasta.
- LEGUMES: Legumes are beans, peas, and lentils which are loaded with protein, minerals and fiber. Legumes--all types of beans, (chickpeas, black beans, kidney beans, white beans, red beans, navy beans), peas and lentils, are great sources of fiber, protein, iron, calcium, zinc and B vitamins. This group also includes the soy group: tofu, soy milk, tempeh and veggie burgers. Not only are legumes free of cholesterol and animal fat, (like all plant based foods), but they also help reduce cholesterol and stabilize blood sugar. Aim for 2 or more servings per day. Serving size: 1/2 cup of cooked beans, 4 oz of tofu or tempeh, 8 oz of a plant based milk...I recommend Almond milk instead of soy.
- VEGETABLES: The list of foods included in this category are endless! Eat a huge variety of every color in the rainbow. Vegetables are RICH in vitamins, minerals, fiber, and phytonutrients....they are our POWERHOUSE, CANCER-FIGHTING, 'MOP UP THE MESS' ammunition!! They flood our body with with all the nutrients we require for optimal health. They have ZERO cholesterol and ZERO saturated fat. Some of the most nutritious vegetables include DARK LEAFY GREENS like broccoli, collards, kale, mustard and turnip greens, spinach, chicory and bok choy. Other highly nutritious choices are the yellow-orange vegetables, such as carrots, winter squash, yams and pumpkin. Aim for at least 5 servings or more per day. Serving size: 1 cup raw; 1/2 cup cooked. Personally, I NEVER LIMIT vegetables....there is no such thing as eating too many vegetables!!
- FRUITS: Fruits are loaded with fiber and vitamins, especially vitamin C, minerals, and phytochemicals...again, the disease-fighting compounds found in plants. Apples, oranges, bananas, mangos, papayas, watermelon, pears, blueberries, strawberries, raspberries, etc., etc....are loaded with all kinds of vitamins and minerals. Choose whole fruit over fruit juice...juice has more calories, (added sugar), and less fiber....always choose the "whole food". Aim for 3 or more servings per day. Serving size: 1 medium piece of fruit; 1/2 cup of cooked fruit; 1/4 cup of dried fruit; if you have to drink juice, 4 oz.
For optimal health, this is really the Four Food Groups we all should be choosing from each and everyday. Eating this way will automatically shed pounds, (I'm telling you, the weight just DROPS OFF), gives you endless energy, AND protects you from all kinds of diseases. In my opinion, this information should be on billboards everywhere and all over the news touting the benefits of eating this way.
The only problem is......Big Business won't be so profitable.....people will become so much more healthier, our health care crisis will no longer be, the pharmaceutical companies will take a hit, and people will not need to visit the doctor very much at all.....
That's why this information is such a well-kept SECRET.....The only people that profit are the people eating this way and that doesn't make corporate America any money......
HAVING GOOD HEALTH....PRICELESS!