The definition of a healthy diet may vary somewhat, but most experts agree that it includes increasing intake of fresh fruits and vegetables, choosing whole-grain foods rather than more refined grain products, and limiting the intake of fats, cholesterol, sugar and sodium.
Following a healthier diet may be an important component of weight-loss efforts. The federal National Institutes of Health (NIH) recommends that women seeking to lose weight follow a target of 1000-1200 calories per day. For men seeking to lose weight, a reasonable target for caloric intake is 1200-1600 calories per day; this range is also suitable for women who weigh 165 lbs or more, or for women who exercise regularly.
For many people, even those without heart disease or risk factors for heart disease, following a heart-healthy diet will also promote general health. The American Heart Association provides helpful nutrition guidelines through its website (https://www.heart.org). The Choose My Plate website, sponsored by the US Department of Agriculture, is another good resource for nutrition tips (https://www.myplate.gov).