Resources & Glossary for Healthy Eating
American Dietetic Association
120 S. Riverside Plaza, Suite 2000
Chicago, IL 60606
This large organization of food and nutrition professionals provides information and advice to the general public through its Web site, outreach efforts, and publications.
The Nutrition Source — Knowledge for Healthy Eating
Harvard School of Public Health
Department of Nutrition
This Web site gives free public access to the latest information on nutrition and health.
Books and publications
Eat, Drink, and Weigh Less: A Flexible and Delicious Way to Shrink Your Waist Without Going Hungry
Mollie Katzen and Walter C. Willett, M.D.
This book teams Mollie Katzen, author of the landmark Moosewood Cookbook, with Dr. Walter Willett, head of the Harvard School of Public Health’s Department of Nutrition. Together they’ve created a weight-loss plan that’s easy to implement and filled with delicious foods and more than 100 delicious recipes.
Eat, Drink, and Be Healthy: The Harvard Medical School Guide to Healthy Eating
Walter C. Willett, M.D., with P.J. Skerrett
(Simon & Schuster, 2005)
This book provides state-of-the-art information about the links between diet and health. An extensive selection of recipes helps readers put the latest nutrition findings into practice.
Eat, Play, and Be Healthy: The Harvard Medical School Guide to Healthy Eating for Kids
W. Allan Walker, M.D., with Courtney Humphries
Written by a world-renowned nutrition expert and Harvard professor of pediatrics, this book shows you how to feed your children to ensure that their young bodies and minds enjoy full and healthy growth at every stage of development.
body mass index (BMI): An estimate of the body’s fat content, calculated from measurements of height and weight.
dietary fiber: The edible, nondigestible component of carbohydrates naturally found in plant food.
dietary reference intakes (DRIs): A comprehensive set of standards for daily intake of essential vitamins and minerals, based on evidence from scores of observational and clinical studies.
essential fats: Beneficial polyunsaturated fats, including both omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids, that come exclusively from foods and supplements; they are not manufactured by the body.
glycemic index: A measure of how soon and how much a serving of a food causes blood sugar to rise. Foods with a high glycemic index are thought to increase the risk of insulin resistance and other health problems.
high-density lipoproteins (HDLs): Spherical particles that transport cholesterol from body cells to the liver and other sites for elimination; called “good” cholesterol because high levels are associated with a low risk for heart disease.
insulin resistance: An adverse condition in which the body does not respond normally to insulin, the hormone that ferries sugar from the blood into the cells. Insulin resistance can lead to type 2 diabetes and heart disease.
low-density lipoproteins (LDLs): Spherical particles that transport cholesterol in the blood; called “bad” cholesterol because high levels are associated with a high risk for heart disease.
macronutrients: The basic categories of nutrients that humans need for energy and metabolism: fat, carbohydrate, and protein.
micronutrients: The vitamins and minerals that humans need to maintain normal body functions and prevent certain illnesses.
monounsaturated fats: Beneficial fats that contain one double bond between adjacent carbon atoms.
omega-3 fatty acids: Beneficial fats also known as n-3 fatty acids. These are polyunsaturated fats in which the last double bond between carbon atoms is located three carbons from the end of the chain.
omega-6 fatty acids: Beneficial fats also known as n-6 fatty acids. These are polyunsaturated fats in which the last double bond between carbon atoms is located six carbons from the end of the chain.
phytochemicals: Substances made by plants that have biological effects in the human body. Some are phytoestrogens, chemicals that behave like (or sometimes block the action of) the hormone estrogen.
polyunsaturated fats: Beneficial fats that contain two or more double bonds between adjacent carbon atoms.
saturated fats: Unhealthy fats in which all the carbon atoms are bonded to the maximum number of hydrogen atoms so there are no double bonds between the carbons.
trans fatty acids (trans fats): Unhealthy fats that occur naturally in meat but come mainly from processed foods made with hydrogenated oils. Hydrogenated oils are polyunsaturated fats that have been chemically altered to be made more like saturated fats.
triglycerides: Fat that is transported through the bloodstream. High levels increase the risk of heart disease.