Nutrition guidelines

Here are some guidelines and tips to help ensure you get the nutrients you need.
Published 24 August 2017

Guide to nutrition

The Australian Dietary Guidelines recommend eating a variety of nutritious foods from the following five food groups every day, to maintain your health and wellbeing.

1. Dairy

Each day you need 2.5 serves of reduced-fat dairy (3 for teenagers or breastfeeding mums and 4 for women over 50). What's a serve?

  • 1 cup (250ml) skim, no-fat or low-fat dairy or soy milk
  • ½ cup (125ml) low-fat evaporated milk
  • ¾ cup (200g) low-fat natural yoghurt
  • 2 slices (40g) reduced-fat hard cheese
  • ½ cup (120g) low-fat or reduced-fat ricotta or cottage cheese

2. Fruit

Each day you need 2 serves of fruit. What's a serve?

  • 2 small pieces of fruit (such as plums, apricots, mandarins or kiwifruit)
  • 1 medium-sized piece of fruit (such as an apple, banana, orange or pear)
  • 1 small bunch of grapes
  • 1 cup chopped fresh fruit salad
  • 1 cup canned fruit (no added sugar)

3. Vegetables

Each day you need at least 5 serves of vegetables. What's a serve?

  • ½ cup cooked vegetables
  • 1 small (or half a medium) potato
  • 1 cup raw salad vegetables
  • ½ cup (85g) cooked dried or canned beans or lentils

4. Cereals & grains

Each day you need 3-6 serves of cereals/grains (preferably wholegrains). What's a serve?

  • 1 slice (40g) wholemeal or wholegrain bread
  • ½ medium (40g) wholemeal or wholegrain bread roll
  • ½ cup (75–120g) cooked rice, pasta, noodles, barley, quinoa or polenta
  • ½ cup (120g) cooked porridge
  • ⅔ cup (30g) wheat cereal flakes
  • 2 (30g) wheat-flake or oat-flake breakfast biscuits
  • ¼ cup (30g) natural (untoasted) muesli

5. Lean protein

Each day you need 2-3 serves of lean protein. What's a serve?

  • 65g cooked lean beef, lamb, veal or pork (90–100g raw)
  • 80g cooked lean poultry (100g raw)
  • 100g cooked fish fillet (115g raw)
  • 2 large eggs
  • 170g tofu
  • 30g nuts, seeds or peanut/ almond butter
  • 1 cup cooked legumes (such as lentils, chickpeas or cannellini beans)

Stay hydrated

Drink 6-8 non-alcoholic drinks a day (water is ideal) as it helps you stay hydrated and can also help you feel full.

If you drink alcohol, try to stick to no more than 2 standard alcoholic drinks a day and aim for at least two alcohol-free days a week.