Chapter 1 Key Elements of Healthy Eating Patterns

Print this section


The 2015-2020 Dietary Guidelines provides Guidelines and Key Recommendations with clear guidance for individuals to enhance eating and physical activity patterns. Implementation of these Guidelines will help promote health and prevent chronic disease in the United States. At the core of this guidance is the importance of consuming overall healthy eating patterns, including vegetables, fruits, grains, dairy, protein foods, and oils—eaten within an appropriate calorie level and in forms with limited amounts of saturated fats, added sugars, and sodium. Examples of how to put this guidance into practice are provided by the Healthy U.S.-Style Eating Pattern and its two variations, a Healthy Mediterranean-Style Eating Pattern and a Healthy Vegetarian Eating Pattern.