The Healthy Eating Plate does not define a certain number of calories or servings per day from each food group. The relative section sizes suggest approximate relative proportions of each of the food groups to include on a healthy plate. They are not based on specific calorie amounts, and they are not meant to prescribe a certain number of calories or servings per day, since individuals’ calorie and nutrient needs vary based on age, gender, body size, and level of activity.


Some advocates for juicing may claim that your body absorbs more nutrients from juices than the whole fruit because the fruit’s fiber gets in the way. However, there isn’t much research out there that supports that claim. Your digestive system is designed to handle fiber and extract nutrients from a variety of foods. Plus, fiber is important for digestive function and has a multitude of health benefits.
“Of course, juice is not free of sugar and calories,” Sharp says. “But compared to soda and other sweetened beverages like sports drinks, it has more nutrient density without added sugar and preservatives.” Basically, if you have to choose between a vodka Coke and a screwdriver (vodka with orange juice), pick the latter. And make sure the juice is fresh, since carton juices can pack just as much sugar as the soda.

Research has found that children who take multivitamin supplements have higher IQ’s. Introduce your child to fresh juice which is more nutrient-rich than the best multivitamin with more vitamins, minerals, fiber, enzymes, and phytonutrients. Also, research is beginning to question the safety of supplements. For instance, vitamin E and selenium increase the risk of prostate cancer in men under 65, and beta-carotene increases the risk of lung cancer in smokers.

“Juicing may be the fastest and easiest way to get in nutrients from the vegetables you’d rather skip at dinner,” Sharp says of the kales, celeries, spinaches, and other often-dissed veggies. “If you have a juice with a meal or otherwise, make sure you supplement with fiber to make up for what’s lost in the juicing process if you don’t leave the peel on.” (May we suggest a nice bed of lentils?)


Each of our 7 healthy homemade juice recipes provides about a quarter of the average daily recommended fruit and vegetables per glass (5 1/2 cups for a 2,000-calorie diet). Several studies show that adding more fruits and vegetables to your diet can improve your mental health and sense of well-being, yet most of us don't get enough. While smoothies generally contain more fiber (because the whole piece of produce ends up in the final product) and more fruit, fresh juices can be loaded with dark leafy greens and lots of red, orange and/or purple vegetables to help maximize the nutrients in every glass. Our 7-day juice plan gives you delicious recipes every day to help you add more fruits and vegetables to your diet.
SS: A juice cleanse may result in short-term weight loss, which may be due to diuresis [the increased production of urine] versus true weight loss. I would not recommend it as an effective, long-term way to lose weight because drinking solely juice is not sustainable. Additionally, when you deprive the body of its favorite foods for an extended period of time you’re more likely to overeat and overindulge — and as a result regain the weight — once you return to your everyday eating habits.
Fruit and vegetable juice can be part of a healthy diet and a way to get in additional servings of fruits and vegetables. Clinical research on juice cleanses, however, is limited. A juice cleanse typically involves lack of solid food and a low calorie intake. Long term, drinking just juice is not healthy since juice lacks protein, which could make it difficult to maintain muscle mass. Cleanses also could put you at risk for nutrient deficiencies since they lack fat-soluble vitamins and essential fatty acids.
These include soda, candy, white bread, regular pasta, and many snack foods and baked goods. A high intake of added sugar increases inflammation and insulin resistance, increasing the risk of diabetes, cardiovascular disease, and other disorders—and it supplies “empty” calories that contribute to weight gain. Refined grain products have little dietary fiber and have been stripped of many nutrients; a high intake can cause many of the same health problems as added sugar.

Now don’t get me wrong – that’s great – and it’s always amazing to see people becoming healthier, but there are some significant problems with the normal style of juicing – problems that especially athletes need to be extremely wary of. While juicing can be healthy and you probably know how nutrient-dense vegetables can be, there are two big juicing problems that you must be warned about: “obesity traps”and “performance drains”.


Once you slice and sauté your way to a fabulous feast, you don't have to finish every bite. "We're conditioned to think that if we don't devour everything on our plate, we are misbehaving," McKenna says. But if you keep munching even after you're full, you are using your body as a storage unit. If there's enough left over for lunch tomorrow, pack it up and put it in the fridge. Otherwise, toss scraps in the trash. We promise we won't tell your mom.
The latest Dietary Guidelines no longer give a daily cap for dietary cholesterol (previously it was 300 milligrams), because there’s abundant evidence that dietary cholesterol (found only in animal foods) has little if any effect on most people's blood cholesterol. Rather, saturated fats raise LDL (“bad”) cholesterol more than dietary cholesterol does. But don't go overboard with cholesterol-rich foods, since many of them are also high in saturated fats. And if you have cardiovascular disease or diabetes, ask your doctor if you should limit dietary cholesterol.
This may sound obvious, but many people think that healthy eating and enjoyment are mutually exclusive. Pretend you never heard the word “diet.”‘ Instead, work toward a lifestyle built on healthy choices that are going to work for the long-term. In order to achieve that goal, find nutritious foods that you enjoy eating. Food should be something you relish and that nourishes you. It’s not just fuel.
I typically plan on making meals for 3-4 days during my meal prep sessions, depending upon the protein I’m using. If I’m using seafood, I never go more than 3 days, and sometimes just do 2 day’s worth. For chicken and beef, I prep for 3-4 days at a time. I keep certain components like sauces separate until I’m ready to eat so that the food doesn’t get soggy in the fridge.

Milk Thistle: Milk thistle was used by medical herbalists in the late nineteenth century to treat varicose veins and liver, spleen and kidney disorders.  Today, it is primarily used to improve the function of the liver, kidneys and gastrointestinal system.  Many individuals have seen dramatic improvement using milk thistle for health issues such as psoriasis, menstrual problems, jaundice and poor circulation (19) .

The Dietary Guidelines for Americans 2010 (DGA) reports that most Americans over the age of four years are not eating enough fruits and vegetables, and do not get enough dietary fiber, important minerals such as folate, potassium, magnesium, or vitamins A, C, and K in their diet. Fruits and vegetables are also a good source of folate which is especially important for women who may become pregnant. Juicing can be one way to add more fruits and/or veggies into your day. With so much information available in the media, it can sometimes be difficult to know what’s true and what’s false. Read the following Q&A to get the facts on juicing.
The saturated fats in animal foods generally boost levels of LDL (“bad”) cholesterol and have other adverse effects. To limit your intake, choose lean meats, skinless poultry, and nonfat or low-fat dairy products. It’s also a good idea to replace saturated fats with unsaturated fats (see next slide). Keep in mind, though, that not all saturated fats are bad for you; those in chocolate, milk, and cheese, for example, are more neutral in their effect on blood cholesterol. Trans fats from partially hydrogenated oils are even worse than saturated fats, but FDA regulations have now nearly phased them out of the food supply.
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