The Dietary Guidelines for Australians promote good health and good nutrition for all Australians. An Accredited Practising Dietitian (APD) can help to tailor these guidelines to individual needs.

The Dietary Guidelines for Australians are designed to help people choose foods for a healthy life.

The guidelines advise the following:

Guideline 1

To achieve and maintain a healthy weight, be physically active and choose amounts of nutritious food and drinks to meet your energy needs

  • Children and adolescents should eat sufficient nutritious foods to grow and develop normally. They should be physically active every day and their growth should be checked regularly.
  • Older people should eat nutritious foods and keep physically active to help maintain muscle strength and a healthy weight.

Guideline 2

Enjoy a wide variety of nutritious foods everyday from the five food groups. This includes:

  • Plenty of vegetables, including different types and colours, and legumes/beans
  • Fruit
  • Grain (cereal) foods, mostly wholegrain and/or high fibre varieties, such as breads, cereals, rice, pasta, noodles, polenta, couscous, oats, quinoa and barley
  • Lean meats and poultry, fish, eggs, tofu, nuts and seeds, and legumes/beans
  • Milk, yoghurt, cheese and/or their alternatives, mostly reduced fat (reduced fat milks are not suitable for children under the age of two years)
  • And drink plenty of water.

Guideline 3

Limit intake of foods containing saturated fat, added salt, added sugars and alcohol

  • Limit intake of foods high in saturated fat such as many biscuits, cakes, pastries,
    pies, processed meats, commercial burgers, pizza, fried foods, potato chips,
    crisps and other savoury snacks.
  • Replace high fat foods which contain mostly saturated fat with foods that contain mostly polyunsaturated and mono unsaturated fats. For example swap butter, cream, cooking margarine, coconut and palm oil with unsaturated fats from oils, spreads, nut butters/pastes and avocado.
  • Low fat diets are not suitable for children under the age of two years.
  • Limit intake of foods and drinks containing added salt.
  • Read labels to choose lower sodium (salt) options among similar foods.
  • Do not add salt to foods in cooking or at the table.
  • Limit intake of foods and drinks containing added sugars such as confectionery, sugar-sweetened soft drinks and cordials, fruit drinks, vitamin waters, energy and
    sports drinks.
  • If you choose to drink alcohol, limit intake. For women who are pregnant, planning a pregnancy or breastfeeding, not drinking alcohol is the safest option.

Guideline 4

Encourage, support and promote breastfeeding

Guideline 5

Care for your food; prepare and store it safely

There are also Dietary Guidelines specifically designed for children and adolescents.

An Accredited Practising Dietitian can provide practical, expert and individual advice on how to incorporate the Dietary Guidelines into every day eating, contact us now to book a consultation with our dieticians. 

To view the original article click here.

This information was obtained with permission from the National Health and Medical Research Council (2013) Australian Dietary Guidelines. Canberra: National Health and Medical Research Council.

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