Grains, wholegrains, and cereals: rich in carbohydrates, calcium, iron and vitamin B, fibre. These are the foods that should be eaten most. Eat three to six servings a day. Fruits and vegetables: rich in antioxidants, minerals, vitamins A and C, folates, fibre. Eat at least six taels (two portions the size of a rice bowl) of vegetables a day, and two to three pieces of fruit per day. Meats, meat substitutes, fish, poultry, dairy products and nuts: rich in protein, iron, vitamin B12, minerals and fat. Dairy products contain vitamins A and D. Eat three to five taels of meat or meat substitute, one to two portions of dairy products. Fats, oils, salt, sugary foods and drinks: high-energy source but low in nutritional value. Use sparingly. The major nutrients Vitamin A Found in two forms - retinol (foods from animal sources) and carotenoids (foods from plant sources, beta carotene is the most popular, and can be converted into retinol in the body). Necessary for normal growth and development and maintenance of mucous membranes and skin. Essential for vision in dim light. Sources: retinol is found in liver, milk, cheese, egg yolk and fatty fish, carotenes in dark leafy green vegetables, carrots and tomatoes. Vitamin B1 (thiamin) Needed to release energy from carbohydrates. Important for brain and nerves which use glucose for energy needs. Sources: nuts, wholegrains and meats, especially pork. Vitamin B2 (riboflavin) Releases energy from protein, carbohydrate and fat. Sources: milk, eggs, enriched cereals and grains, green vegetables such as broccoli. Vitamin B6 Assists with metabolism of protein. Sources: beef, fish, poultry Vitamin B12 Necessary for the formation of blood cells and nerve sheaths. Sources: only found in animal products. Organ meats are excellent sources, also found in egg yolks, fish and poultry. Vitamin C (ascorbic acid) Aids production of collagen, the protein in connective tissue. Also helps the body absorb iron, and aids wound healing. Sources: plant sources such as leafy green vegetables, green peppers, citrus fruits, berries and melons. Vitamin D Promotes and controls the body's absorption of calcium from foods, which is essential for development and maintenance of teeth and bones. Sources: cheese, fish, fortified cereals and milk. Also made by the action of ultra violet rays on skin. Sunlight is an important source for most people. Vitamin E An essential fat-soluble vitamin containing compounds called tocopherals. Protects cell membranes from damage by oxidation by acting as an antioxidant, ridding the body of free radicals. Sources: vegetable and seed oils including corn, soybean and sunflower, as well as nuts, wholegrains and leafy vegetables. Vitamin K Essential for the formation of proteins that clot blood. Sources: leafy green vegetables such as cabbage, Brussels sprouts and spinach. Folate (folic acid) Necessary for the formation of red blood cells. Higher intakes before conception and during the first three months of pregnancy can reduce incidence of spina bifida in babies. Sources: fortified cereals, citrus fruits, asparagus, Brussels sprouts, spinach, baked beans, chickpeas, kidney beans and lentils. minerals: Calcium Essential for development and maintenance of bones and teeth. Deficiency can increase risk of bone fractures or osteoporosis. Also assists blood clotting and nerve function. Sources: dairy products, dark green leafy vegetables. Iron Required for formation of haemoglobin in red blood cells, which transport oxygen around the body. Sources: plant and animal sources such as red meat and offal are rich in iron. Also in cereals and pulses, and green vegetables. Sodium Regulates body water content and nerve funtion. Sources: salt Potassium Helps functioning of cells. Sources: everything except sugars, fats and oils. Unprocessed foods have a higher content. Magnesium Assists energy transfer in cells, enzyme activity and muscle functioning. Sources: wholegrain cereals, nuts and spinach. Phosphorus Essential component of cells, also present in bones and teeth. Sources: milk, cheese, eggs, fish and meat. Iodine Converts into iodide in the gut and trapped by the thyroid gland. Thyroid hormones regulate cell activity and growth in tissues. Sources: some plants such as cabbage, Brussels sprouts and legumes, and seafoods. Iodine content is determined by the level of iodine in the environment. Zinc Needed for growth, tissue repair and sexual maturation. Sources: red meat, white meat, shellfish, milk, cheese, eggs, pulses. Fibre Necessary for normal bowel movements. Sources: cereals, beans, pulses, fruits and vegetables Protein Required for growth and repair of the body, and also provides energy. Sources: meat, fish, eggs, milk, cheese, cereals, nuts and pulses.