The best diet for health maintenance, and for the prevention of avoidable diseases, should include a wide variety of foods from the four food groups. Such a diet should conform to the best knowledge we have based on good science and not on clever marketing. A healthy diet should both induce weight loss in the obese, and help all individuals prevent nutrition-related diseases such as heart disease, diabetes, cancer, and other ailments.

The diets include nutrients from all the four groups and thereby maintain the metabolic balance of the body. According to the scientific community, a healthy diet should adhere to the 60-20-20 Plan - meaning that you should derive 60 per cent of your energy from carbohydrates and 20 per cent each from fats and proteins. The author's programme adheres to this plan with a small modification.

The plan first readjusts the amount of present calorie intake by five per cent per week to a maximum of 30 percent, that is, over a period of six to ten weeks (depending on the person) the calorie intake is gradually reduced to almost 60 per cent of the original. The balance is maintained at the same level. An example:

Step 1 :

The first step is to ascertain the present calorie intake proportion. (Typically, people tend to have a greater percentage of fat in their diets than the ,typical proportion.)

Assuming that a person was originally consuming 2,500 calories at the start of the programme, then the

Expected Ideal Proportion of calorie intake is:

Carbohydrates 60% of 2,500 = 1,500 calories

Fats 20% of 2,500 = 500 calories

Proteins 20% of 2,500 = 500 calories

Step 2

Calorie Reduction: A maximum of 5 per cent per week, which means that in this particular case the calorie intake will be reduced by 5 per cent of 2,500 = 125 calories per week.

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