Diet is a catch-all term that refers to a person’s pattern of eating. Example diets can include vegan, vegetarian, keto, paleo, gluten-free, low-calorie, low-FODMAP, and Mediterranean diets. Each diet has its own set of guidelines that describe what is and isn’t compliant. For example, vegan diets don’t include animal products of any kind and instead are made up of all plant-based foods.

There is not a one-size-fits-all when it comes to diets and nutrition plans. Learn more about specific eating patterns to find what is best for you. You can also adjust any type of diet to make it fit better with your lifestyle, goals, and needs.

Frequently Asked Questions

  • What is the keto diet?

    Originally used for the treatment of epilepsy, the keto diet involves a meal plan that is very low in carbs and high in fat. It touts significant weight loss by putting the body into a state of ketosis (the state when the body doesn’t have enough carbohydrates to use for energy, so it burns fat instead). It's important to note that there is no research to date to assess the safety of the keto diet long-term.

  • What is the Mediterranean diet?

    The Mediterranean diet is a highly regarded way of eating that is inspired by the eating and lifestyle habits of people who live in the Mediterranean, such as Greek populations. The long-term, lifestyle approach promotes flavor, community, movement, and abundance or nutrients and food choices. Staples of the Mediterranean diet include whole grains; vegetables; lean protein sources like fish, legumes, and nuts; and healthy fats like olive oil. Research suggests that the Mediterranean diet may reduce the risk of heart disease, cancer, and diabetes. It is often named the best overall diet by "U.S. News and World Report."

  • What is an anti-inflammatory diet?

    Those with chronic inflammation or inflammatory diseases may be interested in following an anti-inflammatory diet. It focuses on foods that reduce inflammation in the body, such as fruits, vegetables, whole grains, and more. It recommends against foods that increase inflammation, such as processed foods and alcohol.

  • How many carbs are in a low-carb diet?

    There is no universal definition of a low-carb diet. The number of carbohydrates permitted on a low-carb diet depends on the specific meal plan. The keto diet, for example, is a variation of a very low-carb diet that typically recommends 20 to 50 grams of carbohydrates per day. Some evidence suggests that a low carbohydrate diet may be defined as less than 130 grams per day, or 26% of total energy intake.

  • What is the BRAT diet?

    The BRAT diet is a highly restrictive diet recommended for people with gastrointestinal issues or upset stomachs. BRAT stands for bananas, rice, applesauce, and toast. It’s not recommended as much anymore, but it used to be highly recommended by pediatricians for children with stomach problems.

Key Terms

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