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Student Meet the Multidisciplinary Team

Tracy Earley is a consultant nurse in nutrition

BMJ 2020; 370 doi: (Published 07 September 2020) Cite this as: BMJ 2020;370:m2323

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What is a balanced diet?

A balanced diet is tasty and satisfying, supplies all vital nutrients, and conforms to the design of our gastrointestinal (GI) tract. Our GI tract, especially our teeth and intestines, suggests that we're herbivorous omnivores, which means that we should eat primarily, but not exclusively, a vegetarian diet. This matches the lacto-ovo-vegetarian diet, which excludes meat and fish, but includes milk, eggs, fruits, and vegetables, and supplies all essential vitamins, minerals, amino acids, fatty acids, soluble fiber, and insoluble fiber. A balanced diet is based on our genetics, anatomy, physiology, biochemistry, and lifestyle.

Competing interests: No competing interests

09 September 2020
Hugh Mann