Your immune system, brain, muscles, bones and cells in all your body tissues need daily doses of vital nutrients to function properly. Nutrient deficiencies may increase your risk of infection, illness and disease. Excessive intake of nutrients may also cause health problems. Follow the recommended daily nutrition guidelines to give your body the nutrients that it needs to stay healthy.
Calories provide a measure of the energy content in food. The energy that you consume must equal the amount of calories that you burn, if you want to maintain your weight. Excess calorie ingestion or insufficient physical activity will lead to weight gain and obesity. You can loose weight by eating fewer calories than you expend, burning more calories than you eat or combining both of these behaviors. The recommended daily calorie intake for men ranges from 2000 to 3000 depending on activity level. Calorie recommendations range from 1600 and 2400 depending on physical activity.
Every living cell in your body contain protein. This nutrient helps your body maintain bones, muscles and skin. Meats, dairy products, nuts, certain grains and beans contain dietary protein. The average person needs 50 to 65 grams of protein each day. The recommended daily protein intake for adults is approximately 0.36g per pound of your ideal body weight. The gram per bodyweight recommended daily amount of protein for children is higher.
Carbohydrates and Fiber
Carbohydrates are your body’s primary source of energy. These nutrients provide energy for processes in your cells, tissues and organs. Get 45 to 65 percent of your total calories from carbohydrates to meet the daily recommended intake for adults . Younger children may not require as many carbohydrates, because their diet requires a higher proportion of calories from fat. Vegetables, fruits, whole grains, milk and milk products are the major food sources of carbohydrates. All natural sources of carbohydrates are sources of dietary fiber, include 14g of fiber per 1,000 calories in your diet.
Vitamins and Minerals
Vitamins and minerals support normal growth and development, keep your immune system strong and help cells throughout your body function properly. Get the vitamins and minerals that your body needs by consuming a wide variety of foods. Include whole-grains, fresh fruits, vegetables and dairy products in your diet. Eat nuts, seeds, eggs and lean meats to make sure you get all the vitamins and minerals that you need. Natural sources of vitamins and minerals may be more beneficial than supplements like multi-vitamin pills.
Consume alcohol in moderation. One and two drinks per day meet the recommended daily intake for women and men, respectively. Women and men should not exceed three or four drinks per day, respectively. Moderate alcohol consumption among middle-aged and older adults is associated low mortality and may reduce your risk of diabetes and coronary heart disease. One drink may be a 12oz can of beer, 5oz glass of wine or 1.5oz of distilled spirits.