The healthy diet plan outlined here can help get you a better understanding of the foods you should be eating and help you plan delicious and nutritious meals.
This healthy diet plan follows The United States Department of Agriculture's (USDA) recommendations for a woman in her mid-fifty's who is not active. Your needs may be a little higher or lower depending on your age, physical activity, height and weight, and whether you want to lose or gain or stay at your present weight.
The healthy diet plan outlined below is divided into the 5 food groups. Make your choices from each food group in the amounts suggested to help you plan your meals. You can divide them into 3, 4 or 5 meals a day, depending on your personal needs, habits or schedule.
Don't forget to include fats and oils , which are also essential for a healthy diet.
Grains - 5 ounces a day 1 oz equivalents:
Examples of grains: breads, cereal, rice, pasta, corn, barley, oats, wheat, rye, quinoa, amaranth, buckwheat, spelt
Vegetables - 2 cups a day 1 cup equivalents:
Examples - Vegetables can be divided into a number of groups:
Fruits - 1½ cups a day 1/2 cup equivalents:
Examples: apples , bananas, apricots, berries, cherries, citrus fruits, kiwi, mangoes, melons, peaches, pears, papaya, pineapple, plums, dried fruits (without additives),100% fruit juices
Dairy* - 3 cups low-fat or fat-free a day 1 cup equivalents:
Examples: fat-free, low fat, or reduced fat milk, yogurt, hard natural cheeses, ricotta, cottage cheese, ice milk.
If you prefer to stay away from dairy products, there are many other foods that provide calcium . Excellent sources for calcium include canned sardines, mackerel, or salmon eaten with bones, soy products, dark green leafy vegetables, black strap molasses, sesame butter (tehini), sea vegetables, almonds
Proteins - 5 ounces a day 1 ounce equivalents:
How much should you eat?
The exact amount you should eat depends on how active you are. If you eat more than you burn off you will gain weight and vice versa.
Following the serving suggestions in the healthy diet plan above will equal approximately 1600 calories. If you are physically active your needs will range from approximately 1800 to 2200 calories a day.