Save up to 90% on a Hartford Courant subscription. Click here to sign up now!
CT Now

Is Diet Enough to Get Nutrients?

Premium Health News Service

With the jury still out on the benefits of vitamin and mineral supplements -- including multivitamins -- the mantra you'll most likely hear from doctors and nutritionists is to get your nutrients from food whenever possible. But that's not always easy, especially within a limited calorie budget.

Harvard Women's Health Watch consulted two nutrition experts to find out if a supplement-free, nutrient-rich, low-calorie diet is possible to achieve. Their conclusion: yes, with the exception of vitamin D, which is tough to obtain through diet and sun exposure alone (unless you live in the southern latitudes and spend a lot of time outside).

Here's what the newsletter says a 1,200-calorie diet that satisfies the nutrient needs for women ages 51 to 70 might look like:

Breakfast: 8 oz. nonfat yogurt, ½ cup sliced papaya, ½ cup sliced kiwi, 1 oz. (14 halves) walnuts, 4 oz. skim milk.

Lunch: 1 small whole-wheat pita, green salad (1 cup dark green lettuce, 1 red or orange pepper, 1 cup grape tomatoes, ½ cup edamame beans, 1 tbsp. unsalted sunflower seeds, salad dressing made with 1 tbsp. olive oil, balsamic vinegar, and pepper).

Dinner: 4 oz. broiled wild salmon with yogurt sauce (1 tbsp. Greek-style nonfat yogurt, 1 tsp. lemon juice, 1 clove chopped garlic), 1 cup steamed baby bok choy, ¼ cup cooked barley, and ¼ cup cooked lentils with spices to taste.

Copyright © 2015, CT Now