Practical tips in choosing foods in the food groups
Use the Food Pyramid as a guide to plan a healthy diet (except for infants). Ensure all food groups are included in the daily diet, which is important to maintain health. It is critically important to nurture good eating habits from a young age. Parents and carers should act as role models and encourage children to make healthier choices together!
Eat the most
- Select more foods made from grains, such as bread, cereal, rice, and pasta, which are the foundation of a healthy diet.
- Avoid eating high-fat foods, such as fried rice, fried noodles, or instant noodles, which may lead to ingestion of excessive calories and cause weight gain.
- Select more whole grain foods, such as whole wheat bread and oatmeal, which are higher in dietary fibre and nutrient contents than refined grain foods, such as white bread and white rice.
Fruit and vegetables:
- Fruit and vegetables are rich in dietary fibre, antioxidants, vitamins, and minerals, such as vitamin A and C and potassium.
- Select more fruit and vegetables with bright colours, such as spinach, carrot, tomato, and papaya, as they are often richer in vitamins and minerals.
- Avoid overcooking vegetables to minimize nutrient loss. Vegetables can be chopped up into small pieces for people with chewing problems.
- Go for whole fruit rather than fruit juices.
Meat, fish, eggs and dry beans:
- Select low-fat meat, such as lean cut pork, loin, poultry without skin, fish, etc., to cut down on the fat and cholesterol content of dishes and soup.
- Dry beans and bean products, such as soya beans and tofu, are also good selections of protein-rich food.
- Deep-fried tofu and tofu sticks should not be selected too often as they are high in fat.
- Low-fat milk and skimmed milk are lower in saturated fat and are healthier choices.
- People who cannot tolerate milk can eat other calcium-rich foods, such as fortified soy milk, soya beans, tofu, dark green leafy vegetables, etc.
Eat the least
Fat, oil, sugar and salt:
- Use more fresh foods instead of canned or preserved foods, such as pickles, sausages, luncheon meat, which are often high in fat and sodium.
- Eat less food and beverages with added sugar, such as cakes and regular soda. Choose fresh fruit as desserts instead of cakes or ice-cream.
- Use natural seasoning, such as ginger, green onions, garlic, and pepper powder, to bring out the flavours of foods without adding salt (sodium) and sugar.
- When pan-frying or stir-frying, use a non-stick pan or use only a little vegetable oil and stir-fry quickly to reduce the amount of oil used.
- Read nutrition labels on prepackaged foods and choose those that are lower in total fat, trans fat, sugar, and salt (sodium).