Goodbye Pyramid, Hello Plate

7 Jun

I’m sure you’ve all heard the big nutrition news that broke last week- MyPyramid is out, and MyPlate is in.

Goodbye…

Hello…

Honestly, anything is an improvement from the difficult-to-interpret, pretty-much-useless pyramid. The plate presents a balanced diet in a useful, accessible format. It is divided into four sections, the largest being vegetables and grains, and the rest occupied by fruit and protein. A circle off to the side represents the dairy group- perhaps hinting that dairy is optional to a balanced diet. The guidelines that accompany the plate are as follows:

Balancing Calories

● 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.
My Thoughts:

  • Half the plate is fruits and veggies! This is a huge step in the right direction. The majority of the plate is made up of plant-based foods (fruits, veggies, grains)! This is also a huge positive.
  • As Marion Nestle pointed out, “protein” is a macronutrient, NOT a food group. Maybe they were looking for a neutral word to represent all protein sources because further description of the group includes both plant and animal protein sources. However, the meat industry has worked very hard to get consumers to associate the word “protein” with meat.
  • If you choose a plant protein source, you have an entirely plant-based plate! I interpret the dairy off to the side as indication that dairy is not a nessecity. Further description of this group includes alternatives such as soymilk, meaning in a not-so-obvious way MyPlate supports a vegan/vegetarian diet.
  • It’s not exactly ground-breaking, but it’s definitely a step in the right direction. Now, the next step is to get the government on board with their own recommendations. Until they stop subsidizing the wrong industries and start subsidizing the right industries, it is going to be pretty difficult for the public to follow the guidelines.

Check out this pie chart from the Physician’s Committee for Responsible Medicine that shows the current breakdown of the U.S. agriculture subsidies.


This is almost the exact opposite of what MyPlate recommends.

Talk about food for thought.

On that note…
Thanks for reading 🙂

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4 Responses to “Goodbye Pyramid, Hello Plate”

  1. dana @ my little celebration June 8, 2011 at 9:58 am #

    I agree – doesn’t that suck that subsidies don’t go to support fruits and veggies?!! Ughh, no wonder our country doesn’t buy them – they’re too expensive!

    Cute blog. You’re stinkin’ adorable – seriously.

    • admin June 8, 2011 at 3:54 pm #

      Thank you, you’re so sweet 🙂

  2. emily June 9, 2011 at 3:28 pm #

    I think we share very similar views on the new plate. 🙂 I think it’s funny that most Americans don’t even look at it to determine what to eat, though. I think we need a new strategy all together!

    • admin June 9, 2011 at 5:29 pm #

      Agreed!!

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