Adequate well balanced nutritious foods should be taken to prevent obesity or under nutrition.
An adolescent girl should take enough calcium rich foods in her diet to increase bone density, which delays the onset of osteoporosis.
No meal of the day should be missed.
Avoid empty calorie foods such as carbonated beverages and junk foods.
Iron rich foods may be included in the diet to prevent anemia.
Calorie and protein rich foods should be taken to support the growth spurt.
Include fruits and vegetables in the diet to meet the vitamins, minerals and fibre requirement.
Eating habits should be independent of emotions.
Foods from all five food groups should be included in every menu.
It is better to include two cereals in one meal.
To improve the cereal and pulse protein quality, minimum ratio of cereal protein to pulse protein should be 4:1.
Foods rich in fiber should be included in the diet.
Every diet should contain atleast one medium size fruit.
Inclusion of salads or raitha not only helps in meeting the vitamin requirements, but the meals would be attractive and have high satiety value due to the fiber content.
One-third of calories and protein requirement should be met by lunch or dinner.
Processed foods contain a variety of food additives. They may not be nutritionally balanced unless fortified.
Fried foods cannot be planned, if oil allowance is less or low in calorie diets.
At least five servings of fruits and vegetables should be included in a day's diet.
After the age of 35, the basal metabolic rate decreases due to reduced muscle mass and other metabolically active tissue mass. Also there is reduction in physical activity which affects the energy needs.
Source : A report of the expert group of The Indian Council of Medical Research, 2000, Nutrient requirements and recommended dietary allowances for Indians ICMR. New Delhi. 110 029.