A nutritious diet provides the foundation for the attainment and maintenance of optimal health and is associated with a reduced risk of development of degenerative diseases.

However there are many misconceptions about exactly what is a healthy diet and many people may not be well educated about what constitutes the optimal nutritional intake.

While some general guidelines can be outlined to assist with the choice of foods, ultimately each person is unique and will need to adapt and fine tune the diet to suit their needs and objectives. The presence of certain health conditions, nutritional deficiencies and biochemical idiosyncrasies may also require adjustments to macro nutrient or micro nutrient intakes and supplements may be recommended to allow the greatest potential of health to be attained for the individual.

The food guide pyramid was and still is used to guide the general public in their selection of foods for a healthy diet. Unfortunately in the USA this was ruled to be illegal because it was created by member of corporations involved in food production of cereals, dairy products and meat.

Some experts have adapted the food guide pyramid so that is reflects more accurately what is considered to be an optimal diet based on updated knowledge regarding human metabolism. Several variations exist but in general the larger bottom tier consists of vegetables and fruits with refined grains and potatoes towards the top so as to emphasize the use of carbohydrates with a low glycemic index. These pyramids also discriminate between different types of fats so that the essential fatty acids are not overlooked in their importance by being included in the top tier.

These pyramids can be very beneficial to assist with selection of foods so as to construct a healthy diet containing nutritious foods in appropriate portions for optimal health.

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