Healthy Eating


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Chronic diseases

Chronic diseases are diseases that affect people for long periods of time and are generally incurable or hard to cure. Chronic diseases include diabetes (type 1 and 2), heart disease, lung disease, cardio-vascular disease, cancer, obesity and arthritis.

Many chronic diseases can often be prevented through healthy eating and physical activity. 

Everyday foods

'Everyday' foods are the foods that are OK to eat every day. 'Everyday' foods come from the following five food groups:

  • Grain (cereal) foods, mostly wholegrain and /or high cereal fibre varieties
  • Vegetables and legumes/beans
  • Fruit
  • Milk, yoghurt, cheese and/or dairy alternatives, mostly reduced fat
  • Lean meats, poultry, fish, eggs, tofu, nuts, seeds and legumes/beans

Enjoying a variety of 'everyday' foods every day will help you get all the nutrients needed for good health and wellbeing, and to be your best.

Healthy eating

Healthy eating is a term that refers to an eating pattern that promotes optimal health, and supports growth and development for children and adolescents. This includes enjoying a sufficient amount and variety of nutritious food every day.

For a complete definition of the factors that contribute to a healthy diet in young people, refer to the Dietary Guidelines for Children and Adolescents in Australia, 2013.     

Healthy weight

Healthy weight is the natural weight the body adopts given a healthy diet and meaningful level of physical activity.

Norms/Social norms

Social norms are the generally accepted customs or informal rules that govern behaviour in society and within groups. Social norms are powerful at influencing behaviour, and often develop gradually as new ways of doing things or behaving become the normal ways of doing things or behaving within that society or a group.

Social norms about what we eat and drink influence the daily choices we make. In a school where occasional foods are minimised, and fruit and vegetables encouraged, the social norms within the school may support healthy food and drink choices and habits. 

Occasional foods

'Occasional' or 'sometimes' foods include chips, lollies, soft drinks and chocolates.  Occasional foods contain few nutrients and are high in sugar, saturated fat, and/or sodium and are not required for good health. They are OK to eat occasionally (not every day) and in small amounts.