Food-based dietary guidelines

Food-based dietary guidelines - Jamaica

Official name

Food-based dietary guidelines for Jamaica: Healthy eating - Active living.

Publication year

Jamaica launched its food-based dietary guidelines in 2015.

Process and stakeholders

The Guidelines were developed by the Food-based dietary guidelines task force under the leadership of the Nutrition Unit in the Ministry of Health. There was participation from governmental and non-governmental stakeholders including the Ministry of Agriculture and Fisheries, the Ministry of Education, the Early Childhood Commission, the Rural Agriculture Development Authority, the Planning Institute of Jamaica, Jamaica Agricultural Society, the academia, professional nutrition and dietetics associations and consumer organizations. The Pan American Health Organization, the Caribbean Food and Nutrition Institute (now decommissioned) and FAO provided technical assistance and funding.

Intended audience

The Jamaican guidelines are targeted at the general population aged two years and over.

Food guide

The food guide is a plate depicting the recommended proportions of six foods groups for healthy eating. It promotes variety, adequacy, balance and control. The food groups include staples such as corn, tubers, rice and plantain; vegetables; fruits; fats and oils including fat-rich foods such as avocado and coconut; animal-source foods including fish, meat, eggs and dairy products; and legumes and nuts. The size of each food group segment reflects the volume the group should contribute to the total daily diet. In addition, the food guide promotes the drinking of water and participation in physical activity.

Products whose intake is recommended to be reduced,, such as salty and sugary food and highly-processed products, are not depicted in the food guide.


  • Eat a variety of foods from all the food groups daily.
  • Eat a variety of fruits daily.
  • Eat a variety of vegetables daily.
  • Include peas, beans and nuts in your daily meals.
  • Reduce intake of salty and processed foods.
  • Reduce intake of fats and oils.
  • Reduce intake of sugary foods and drinks.
  • Make physical activity a part of your daily routine.