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Dietary Guidelines 2005 - Nutrition and Exercise
by PopularFitness.com
The US government has come out with new dietary guidelines for 2005. Although the report is general in nature and was created for the American population, the recommendations this report makes I feel are worth mentioning in this article. With technology bringing the world so close together and making information so readily available, you've probably heard of many countries issuing their own guidelines or similar guidelines. Since this one is the most recent, I would like to share with you some of the more important points it makes.

It's goal is to promote and encourage healthy choices in life based on science-based advice. The report focuses on proper nutrition and exercise with a strong emphasis on reducing calorie consumption and increasing physical activity.

There are many reasons for issuing this report. By eating properly, maintaining an ideal body weight and exercising it prevents many diseases such as heart disease, some cancers and enables you to maintain strong muscles and bones. I would like to also stress that it also boosts your immune system and keeps you feeling energetic, motivated and feeling good about yourself. Resulting in a overall healthy body, mind and spirit.

The guidelines and recommendations that this report sets out are as follows:

Weight management

- To maintain a healthy body weight, balance your calorie intake with calories burned.

- To prevent a gradual weight gain over time, decrease your calorie intake over time and increase physical activity.

Exercise and Physical Activity

- Participate in regular physical activity and reduce your sedentary activities.

- Engage in 30 minutes of moderate to intense physical activity each day beyond your daily routine or work at home. Remember the greater the intensity and the longer the duration of your workouts, the greater are going to be your benefits.

- Achieve physical fitness by including cardiovascular exercise, stretching exercises for flexibility and resistance exercises or calisthenics for muscle strength and endurance. 

Nutrition

- Consume a variety of foods among the basic food groups. Choose foods that limit the intake of saturated and trans fats, cholesterol, added sugars, salt and alcohol. 

- Recommended daily intake of fruits and vegetables: 2 cups of fruit, 2.5 cups of vegetables per day for a caloric intake of 2000 calories. Reduce or increase your consumption based on your calorie level.

- Vary your fruit and vegetable intake daily.

- Recommend whole grains. Choose fruits and vegetables that are high in potassium.

- Consume less than 10% of calories from saturated fatty acids and less than 300 mg/day of cholesterol. Eliminate or keep consumption of trans fat as low as possible. 

- Consume less than 1 teaspoon of salt, sodium per day. Reduce your consumption of sugar and sweeteners.

- Consume alcohol in moderation.

You've probably heard many of these points before and I have to admit many of the guidelines are very general in nature. Some people may already be incorporating these guidelines in their daily lives. So this report may just help you to better your way of life. For other readers, you may be wondering how to incorporate them into your lives for whatever your goals may be: weight loss, toning or beginning an exercise program. Many of you may be wondering where and how to begin. You could buy a book or dvd and teach yourself. There are many great resources that you can find on my website popularfitness.com. The drawback is that it takes a lot of your personal time and dedication. Many people eventually give up!



The entire report released by the US Department of Agriculture can be found here.

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