Food is generally available from a plant source or animal source, and is broadly classified into two groups such as vegetarian and non-vegetarian. There are five basic groups of food such as starchy foods, vegetables and fruits, meat group, foods containing fat and sugar, and dairy products.
» Starchy Foods
They include corn, rice, cereals, pasta, bread, etc. They contain simple or complex carbohydrates, which is the major source of energy.
» Vegetables and Fruits
Vegetables such as potato, spinach, cabbage, broccoli, fenugreek, carrot, cauliflower, turnip, etc.; and fruits such as mango, orange, lemon, grapes, apricot, peach, etc., are very important ingredients of a healthy diet. They are rich in several vitamins, minerals, iron, essential enzymes, and fibers and are known for providing a number of health benefits.
» Eggs, Meat, and Fish
They are the important source of proteins, iron, vitamin B and zinc, which are essential for the healthy growth and repair of the body. Eggs contain high amounts of proteins and iron. Some of the fish such as sardines, salmon, mackerel contain high amounts of Omega-3 essential fatty acids.
» Dairy Products
This food group includes milk, cream, yogurt, cheese, and butter, which are the excellent sources of proteins and calcium. These foods are also rich in vitamin A, B, and D. These nutritional supplements work together to make the bones strong and healthy.
» Foods Containing Fat and Sugar
Foods such as butter, oils, and cheese are high in fats and syrups, desserts, jams, jellies, candies, and soft drinks contain high amounts of sugar. They are the good sources of energy required by our body.
Each food group provides us with different kinds of nutrients. A healthy diet is the one that consists foods from all the food groups, in the right quantities.