- Whole grains, legumes, and non-starchy fruits and vegetables
- Whole grains provide a healthier alternative to refined products
- The best vegetables are colorful and personal consumption must include a variety of different colors
- Eat at least 2.5 cups of vegetables and fruits per day
Experts such as the American Heart Association, World Cancer Research Fund, and American Institute for Cancer Research advocate for a diet consisting of the following:
- High energy density foods include foods high in sugar such as sodas in addition to rich foods such as fast foods
- Better alternatives include fruits and vegetables
- Avoid processed meats to reduce both their high energy density and large concentration of sodium. Limit intake of bacon, sausage, lunch meats, and hot dogs in particular
This diet has been shown to reduce the risk of many associated cancers including colorectal cancer and mouth, throat, and esophagus cancers.
Nutritional supplements are potential treatments for common mental disorders such as depression and schizophrenia. These supplements include omega-3-fatty acid, an important fat involved in the production of mood regulating compounds. Supplements also include vitamin b12, folic acid, and inositol.
A Cochrane review extensively assessing literature regarding a low sodium diet concluded that a low sodium diet reduces blood pressure in those with hypertension as well as in those with normal blood pressure. Low sodium intake is commonly promoted through the DASH diet. The DASH diet encourages a lowered consumption of red meat and sugars while increasing consumption of whole grains, fruits and vegetables, and fish and poultry – paralleling a common Mediterranean diet.
As studies regarding optimal nutrition are still relatively new, it is important to consider that while links have been found, more research must be conducted to fully establish many particular associations between diet and health. For example, while fruit and vegetable consumption has been linked to a reduction in disease, where specific foods are compared, the association is unclear.