Healthy Eating

A healthy diet helps pave the way to a healthy heart and blood vessels, strong bones and muscles, a sharp mind, and so much more.

Confused about what constitutes a healthy diet? You aren't alone. Over the years, what seemed to be flip flops from medical research combined with the flood of diet books and diet plans based on little or no science have muddied the water. But a consensus has emerged about the basics, which are really pretty simple.

An important take-home message is to focus on the types of foods you eat and your overall dietary pattern, instead of on individual nutrients such as fat, dietary cholesterol, or specific vitamins. There are no single nutrients or vitamins that can make you healthy. Instead, there is a short list of key food types that together can dramatically reduce your risk for heart disease.

Eat more of these foods: fruits and vegetables, whole grains, fish and seafood, vegetable oils, beans, nuts, and seeds.

Eat less of these foods: whole milk and other full-fat dairy foods, red meat, processed meats, highly refined and processed grains and sugars, and sugary drinks.

Healthy Eating Articles

Losing steam? Avoid these energy zappers

Lifestyle habits may be to blame for some daily fatigue. For example, eating too much processed food can increase inflammation, which impairs the production of adenosine triphosphate (ATP)—the molecule that delivers energy to cells throughout the body. Getting too little sleep or being too stressed out all the time can increase levels of the stress hormone cortisol, which also reduces production of ATP. Eating a healthy diet, getting more sleep, and reducing stress can reduce fatigue. So can avoiding dehydration, exercising more, and staying socially connected. More »

Should you be taking an omega-3 supplement?

Certain people, including those who don’t eat fish and those who are at high risk for cardiovascular events may benefit from omega-3 supplements. But for the average person it’s better to focus on eating a diet that includes fatty fish. Aim for at least two servings a week. More »

Food truck fare: Trendy eats, but are they safe?

Ordering food from a food truck poses several health challenges. Dishes may be loaded with saturated fat, salt, refined carbohydrates, sugar, and calories. There’s no way to know how often a food truck kitchen is cleaned or if food truck operators are trained in proper food safety and handling. Also, food trucks don’t always post the ingredients of food they serve, which can be risky for people on restricted diets. It helps to watch for health inspection documents that are sometimes posted in a food truck window, and to ask food truck operators about the ingredients in food they serve. (Locked) More »

Mediterranean diet works by adding up small improvements

Small changes inside the body may add up to a larger cardiovascular risk reduction—up to 25%—in people who eat the Mediterranean-style diet versus those who do not. One of the biggest changes thought to reduce overall risk in heart and blood vessel disease is a drop in chronic inflammation, a known risk factor for heart disease. (Locked) More »