USDA Throws out Food Pyramid; Replaces it with “MyPlate”by Sonja Rose on Jun. 08, 2011, under Health
MyPlate is the latest in over 100 years of nutritional guidance from the USDA (United States Department of Agriculture).
1894: USDA’s first dietary guidelines are published by Dr. Wilbur Olin Atwater, as a farmer’s bulletin.
1916: USDA publishes its first food guide, Food for Young Children.
1943: The Basic “7″
1956: The Basic “4″ (Milk, meats, breads, fruits & vegetables).
1992: The Food Guide Pyramid
2005: MyPyramid (added the suggestion of physical activity for health).
MyPlate is meant to inspire the public to make correct eating choices, especially in supermarkets and restaurants. First Lady Michelle Obama and Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack made the announcement the first of June 2011. The icon will be placed on food packaging and in nutrition education in the United States.
Since Michelle Obama is actively involved in the “Let’s Move” program, aimed at ending childhood obesity, the re-naming of the Food Pyramid may have had something to do with re-naming it “MyPlate” aimed at all ages.
MyPlate recommends making half of your selections fruits and vegetables; this is my favorite part. It’s not so helpful for people who are lactose intolerant, abstain from dairy, or for people from other cultures who do not drink milk beyond infancy. It is also not helpful for vegetarians, vegans, or those following low-carb, high-protein diets like Atkins.
As for people like me, who believe in the Harvard Study for weight maintenance (read: “Calories In, Calories Out”), it’s not telling me much more than I didn’t already learn from my beloved Food Pyramid. However, if it helps those who need instruction on healthy choices, and children learning about healthy choices, then I’m all for it. Thank you again, Michelle.
I also find it slightly amusing that things are ever-changing in the world of diet opinion. For example, we used to think egg yolks were bad for us; now we can eat the whole egg with wild abandon. Avacados used to be bad because they are high in fat; now we hear it’s “good” fat; (I say they make my coat shiny); and now, last month a study was released saying salt is okay after a University in Belgium studied 3,681 people over a period of 7.9 years and found that salt didn’t hurt their health at all.
How about: Everything in moderation (has that been said before?)