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NCHPAD - Building Healthy Inclusive Communities

Nutrition for Persons with Intellectual/Developmental Disabilities


People with intellectual/developmental disabilities often have a higher tendency of being obese than people in the general population. For ideas on how to improve nutrition in persons with Down syndrome, see the NCHPAD factsheet at /165/1278/Down~Syndrome~and~Nutrition.

 

General Recommendations for maintaining or losing weight include:

  • Eat a diet low in saturated fat. See the American Dietetic Association factsheet at American Dietetic Association; /259/1674/The~5~to~9-A-Day~Challenge).
    • Watch portion control (/81/595/Estimating~Serving~Sizes).
    • Read labels to choose foods that comprise a healthful diet (/84/621/Food~Labels). For example, be aware of the distinction of the following keyword labels:
      • fat-free: less than .5 grams of fat per serving
      • low-fat: 3 grams of fat (or less) per serving
      • lean: less than 10 grams of fat, 4.5 grams of saturated fat, and no more than 95 milligrams of cholesterol per serving
      • light (lite): one-third less calories or no more than half the fat of the higher-calorie, higher-fat version; or no more than half the sodium of the higher-sodium version
      • cholesterol-free: less than 2 milligrams of cholesterol and 2 grams (or less) of saturated fat per serving

 

Please send your comments and feedback to Valerie Lawson at vlawson@uic.edu.



Disclaimer: Proper precautions must be taken before you begin an exercise program. An understanding of your current health status and potential problems is necessary for you to exercise safely. Please contact your physician if you have any concerns. This program is intended to incorporate high-intensity physical activity into your daily life, but should not be used in place of physical therapy, professional medical advice, or treatment.


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