subscribe Signup for our Newsletter expand Expand Browser
Calorie Count Blog

A Simple Diet Plan


By Mary_RD on Feb 12, 2009 01:39 PM in Dieting & You
Edited By +Rachel Berman


Fat, thin or in-between, everybody needs a balanced diet. Calorie Count does not tell you what to eat, but it's still in your best interest to eat a balanced diet that includes foods from all of the food groups.

Food Groups

For every calorie level, there is a best amount of food to eat from each of the food groups You own it to yourself to know which foods and how much each make up a balanced diet for YOU. Before you eat, ask, "Have I had enough of this or too much of that?" Consciously choose your food.

Did you know that you can find a meal plan that lists the food group servings needed for 12 different calorie levels at MyPyramid.gov?  (This assumes you've found your daily calorie requirement using the Tools on Calorie Count.)

Is everybody clear about what the food groups are, and which foods are in each group, and what equals one serving?  If not, take a crash course at MyPyramid.gov, the nutrition education website of the US Government.  Most modern governments sponsor websites that offer similar information.

A Primer

From the questions people ask, I can see that many are not sure about what to eat.  But adults and children should be able to answer these basic nutrition questions:  (Answers are at the end.)

  • What are the food groups?
  • How many servings from each food group do YOU need?
  • Which foods are in each group?  
    Try to categorize fish, eggs, cheese, pasta, tortilla, wine, yogurt, salad, peanut butter, and lentils.)
  • What equals one serving of different foods?  
    (Use fish, eggs, cheese, pasta, biscuits, wine, yogurt, salad, peanut butter, and lentils again.)

A Plan

Now is the time to try to follow a balanced diet.  If you keep food logs, which is a good idea, count your daily servings from the food groups for days past.  Does your diet need improvement?  Then tinker with it until it is balanced.  Your re-balanced food logs now become your personal sample menus. 


And that's what it's all about.


Answers:

  • What are the food groups?  
    Grains, vegetables, fruits, milk, meat & beans, oils, discretionary calories
  • How many servings from each food group do YOU need?  
    I need 1500 calories a day, and so that's 1.5 cups of fruit, 2 cups of vegetables, 5 oz of grain, 4 oz of meat/beans, 3 cups of milk, 4 teaspoons of oil, and about 150 discretionary calories.  Notice how I fudged it a bit because I'm between calorie levels.
  • Which foods are in each group?  
    Fish = meat/beans, eggs = meat/beans, cheese = milk, pasta = grain, tortilla = grain, wine = discretionary calories, yogurt = milk, salad = vegetable, peanut butter = meat/beans
  • What constitutes one serving of different foods?  
    Fish = 1 ounce cooked, eggs = 1, cheese = 1.5 ounces, pasta = 1/2 cup cooked, tortilla = 6" diameter, wine = any amount, yogurt = 1 cup, salad = 2 cups, peanut butter = 1 tbsp


Comments


Is there a diet plan out there for diabetics that addressed the carbo issue?


If you have health insurance, they probably cover diabetic diet planning and education with a registered dietitian. Ask your doctor for a referral. Also visit Diabetic Living website and magazine for lots of recipes and meals, low carb included.


I have some questions Mary:

When should we eat the "last food"? I mean, snack, dinner, etc. before we go to sleep? And for how many hours should we be awake during the day to be sure that we consumed enough calories? I mean not more or less, during the all day? For instance, if I need 2100 calories, and if I slept late the previous night and if I woke up at 14.00 let's say, until what time should I be awake to not to gain weight and to take necessary calories in a balanced way?

I really wonder it because the sleeping hours issue destroys diet plan if you don't know to organize and manage it.

Best wishes


My "last food' was in the freezer before my roommate discovered it and decided to help himself. I think the booze got the better of him because I discovered this "last food" still in the microwave this morning. I'm not an evil person, but I'd really like to inflict some bodily damage to this person that I will only give a name to as "Norm". Grr. He really invokes some fiestyness in my normally calm deameanor.


Mary, thanks for writing this article. I've referred people to it often for valuable information.


Thanks for the link to the meal plan. The information is very useful.



I have a question: lets see if I can phrase it.

Okay so I want to loose about 17 lbs

on a meal plan that consist of 1600 calories I will loose about 2 lbs or so if I am good which I am not always.

How do I know how much of each of the food servings I need to adequately eat that correct amounts of the foods I am supposed to eats, to make sure I get it all in?

if that makes sense, thanking in advance.



Original Post by: needtoloose10

I have a question: lets see if I can phrase it.

Okay so I want to loose about 17 lbs

on a meal plan that consist of 1600 calories I will loose about 2 lbs or so if I am good which I am not always.

How do I know how much of each of the food servings I need to adequately eat that correct amounts of the foods I am supposed to eats, to make sure I get it all in?

if that makes sense, thanking in advance.


First, go to the MEAL PLAN to see the number of servings you need from each food group on 1600 calories.

Second, go the the FOOD GROUPS to see the amount of a particular food that equals one serving.

Plan a balanced diet for a few days to practice until you get the hang of it.

 



Mary- are you talking about the Meal plan on CC or on MFP?

at MFP I fill in my info and it says i should be eating 2200 calories and it proceeds to tell me the servings but I cannot get it to come down to 1600 calories.

sorry for not getting it this is all new to me.

thanks again



mary Im sorry I get it now thanks, but I am sure you will hear from me at some point! LOL

Thanks again.



Original Post by: mable2

Is there a diet plan out there for diabetics that addressed the carbo issue?

Another good place to go is American Heart Association website. Find out how much you really know about the different types of fats, carbs (particularly the difference in sugar types). Diabetes is a risk factor for heart disease and something I am trying to avoid.

When my husband was diagnosed with diabetes he was able to sign up for a week long class offered by Johns Hopkins Hospital. Insurance paid for attendance. I paid for my registration. We both learned a lot and for patients they had podiatrists check feet, registered dietitiansset up meal plans, optometrist check eyes and talk about eye care, plus the usual endocrinologists and diabetes specialists. It was super!



This is a great resource for anyone looking to lose weight and get in shape.  Thank you for sharing.  A successful weight loss plan starts with a well thought out plan.  I found a great online calorie counter tool at fitclick.com



Hi,

I want to try to lose about 2 lbs a week, how many calories should I take in daily, and how much exercise?



I've tried lots of low-fat diets for a couple of years but none of them made me feel satisfied. Although, there are lots of diets,like Atkins diet but it's making me feel weak and unhealthy. But when I tried Medifast Diet,i feel like I'm on the right kind of diet plan. It doesn't make me feel weak.

The caloric intake is around 800-1000 calories.It's a bit pricey, but there are lots of coupons available on the internet http://www.swoopup.com/stores/deals/Medifast-Diet

Even if you don't pay full price.You just have to choose a diet plan which your body reacts positively.No one knows your body better than you do...



Comment Removed

Post Your Comment

Join Calorie Count - it's easy and free!
CREATE FREE ACCOUNT
Advertisement
Advertisement
Allergy Remedies
Is It Possible to Go Natural?
The side effects of allergy medications keep some people from using them. Natural remedies can be a great alternative, but some are more effective than others.