I’ve been a registered dietitian for a long time and have seen so many fad diets come and go. The pendulum swings back in forth regarding which macro-nutrient is in or out vogue. We had the no/low carb diets in the 70’s only to return again and again. We had too much protein being out for a while. Low fat and very low fat diets were a trend for quite a while. Of course, during that time the food industry flooded the shelves with low-fat and fat free products, most of which were loaded with sugar and sodium. During that era, as a nation, we gained weight.
More recently we had celebrities promoting gluten-free diets as the panacea for weight loss and cure-alls. However many of the highly processed gluten-free alternatives are made from highly refined, less nutritious grains and therefore less healthy than the whole grain wheat, rye and barley they replace. Its’ nice to have the GF options for those with Celiac disease, but most people on the GF diet are self-diagnosing and maybe erroneously eliminating some really healthy foods. Other diets like Whole 30 and Paleo restrict or eliminate really healthy foods like whole grains and legumes.
This all brings me to what I think are great guides to healthy eating. These include the Mediterranean style of eating which is essentially a plant based diet with lots of healthy oils and fish and a little red meat and dairy. See the graphic of the Mediterranean Diet Pyramid below.
For those with hypertension I recommend the DASH diet, similar to the Mediterranean Diet with more of an emphasis on sodium restriction. Here’s a link https://dashdiet.org/default.asp.
The US government has MyPlate. I like to use this which teaching children about nutrition as the graphic is great. It shows to divide the plate – half with veggies and fruit, 1/4 protein source and 1/4 whole grains.