There may be a relationship between lifestyle including food consumption and potentially lowering the risk of chronic diseases. A healthy food may consist mostly of whole plant foods, with limited consumption of energy-dense foods, red meat, and salt while reducing consumption of sugary drinks, and processed meat. A healthy food may contain non-starchy vegetables and fruits, including those with red, green, yellow, white, purple or orange pigments.
A healthy food is low in energy density, lowering caloric content, thereby possibly inhibiting weight gain and lowering risk against chronic diseases.
- Eat roughly the same amount of calories that your body is using. A healthy weight is a balance between energy consumed and energy that is 'burnt off'.
- Increase consumption of plant foods, particularly fruits, vegetables, legumes, whole grains and nuts.
- Limit intake of fats, and prefer less unhealthy unsaturated fats to saturated fats and trans fats.
- Limit the intake of sugar. A 2003 report recommends less than 10% simple sugars.
- Limit salt / sodium consumption from all sources and ensure that salt is iodized.