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Plate Replaces Pyramid: USDA Introduces New Tool for Healthy Eating

Jun 09, 2011

On June 2nd, the USDA replaced the nearly 20-year-old Food Pyramid with a new icon for healthy eating: MyPlate. According to the USDA, the plate diagram supports the seven key messages of its dietary guidelines:

  1. Enjoy food but eat less.
  2. Avoid oversized portions.
  3. Make half your plate fruits and vegetables.
  4. Drink water instead of sugary drinks.
  5. Switch to fat-free or low-fat (1%) milk.
  6. Compare sodium in foods.
  7. Make at least half your grains whole grains.

The USDA introduced the original pyramid in 1992 as a tool to help Americans eat healthier. It was criticized for promoting the overeating of "grains and carbohydrates" and for not distinguishing between whole grains and their refined relatives. The agency revamped the icon in 2005 to emphasize the importance of exercise, but critics said the new version was "too abstract" for most people to grasp.

Twenty Years of Trying to Eat Healthier According to the USDA

 Pyramid to Plate: 20 Years of Healthy Eating According to the USDA

Check out this history of the USDA's dietary guidelines dating back to the 1940s.

Your Women's Healthcare Associates provider wants to help you be healthier overall. Make an appointment to ask them about nutrition, exercise, supplements and health screening tests that are important for you.