Australia offers a vast array of choices when it comes to nutritionally rich, healthy foods. Unfortunately like most western countries, we also offer an abundance of "quick fix" impulse foods that are largely nutritionally poor and high in undesirable fats, salts and sugars. To help Australians choose foods that supply adequate nutrition, an invaluable scientific food guide for good health has been developed - the Australian Guide to Healthy Eating (AGHE) . It recommends levels of dietary intake from the different food groups.
The basis of this food guide is that for a healthy diet, a variety of foods are needed daily. No one food, by itself, supplies all the essential nutrients. The food guide lists the number of serves of foods from each group that should be eaten each day for health as they supply our bodies with necessary and balanced amounts of energy, vitamins and minerals, protein, fat, carbohydrate and dietary fibre.
Each day, select a wide variety of foods from within these food groups, in their recommended proportions.
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As a basic guideline, we should eat from these groups as follows:
Eat plant foods in abundance - vegetables, legumes, fruit, bread, cereal, rice, pasta, and noodles.
Eat animal foods in moderation - milk, yoghurt, cheese, meat, fish, poultry, and eggs.
Drink lots of water every day.
Following is a more detailed explanation of these groups and how they contribute to a healthy diet, as well as more specific recommendations for a daily number of servings.