Ever since really learning how to eat healthy and what works for me, I couldn’t understand how the food pyramid could be useful at all
That is just way too many grains for me and not nearly enough protein. I mean, you can get protein from things like quinoa and oatmeal but still, most people will reach for bread and cereal when they think “grain”. Also, I think there should be more emphasis on vegetables and fruits over grains. Maybe those bottom two layers should be switched? Anyway, in my opinion, the food pyramid is just all off but they had good intentions I think.
Just recently, the FDA released their latest version of food guidelines for Americans, “My Plate”
From the website (http://www.choosemyplate.gov/)
– Enjoy your food, but eat less.
– Avoid oversized portions.
Foods to Increase
– Make half your plate fruits and vegetables.
– Make at least half your grains whole grains.
– Switch to fat-free or low-fat (1%) milk.
Foods to Reduce
– Compare sodium in foods like soup, bread, and frozen meals \ and choose the foods with lower numbers.
– Drink water instead of sugary drinks.
Overall, I think this is already much better advice. Just looking at the picture, it is much easier to understand. When you are sitting down for a meal, you don’t have to think about how many servings of whatever you had all day, you just think about it as one meal. Mostly fruits and veggies, some grain and protein, and maybe a side of milk or something. Not bad! The extra guidelines are even better but we know most people won’t ever read those.
“Eat Less” – This one is tricky because what about people with eating disorders that already don’t eat enough? But for those who eat too much (I would guess most Americans), then this is good advice.
“Whole Grains” – Again, more good advice but do people know what whole grains are? Do they realize brown rice a whole grain but white isn’t?
I am glad they kept “low fat” milk in there because I have certain opinions on milk. Not all fat is bad, and I’ve read about benefits of drinking at least 1% milk. Hopefully I will blog about that this weekend now that I’ve mentioned it.
I also like that it mentions sodium and water. That is definitely something most people don’t realize they are evening eating a lot of! But really, I don’t think most people are going to read the labels.
There is a lot of other good advice on the website, but again, most people won’t see it. They are probably just going to see the plate on the news or in the paper or online. Again, its much easier for most people to understand. Is it perfect? No but that is impossible. Everyone has different needs, but I definitely think this is a much better guideline for teaching people how to eat.
What is really sad about all of this though is that we need a government agency to teach us what to eat, but that’s a totally different blog entirely!
What do you think of the new My Plate recommendations?