Nutrition and Diet

What is a Healthy, Balanced Diet?

A healthy, balanced diet should provide us with sufficient nutrients, including vitamins and minerals, to help maintain normal physiological functions; to assist with growth and repair of the body; and to help fight and prevent against infection and disease.

The Food Pyramid

The Department of Health’s Food Pyramid categorises foods into different groups and provides guidelines on the number of servings to be eaten from each food group on a daily basis. It is advised to choose a variety of foods from each of the bottom four shelves every day to get a good range of vitamins and minerals. The Food Pyramid applies to individuals from the age of five years; younger children start with smaller and fewer servings which should increase up to these guidelines in accordance with the child’s own growth and appetite (see A Note on Children ).