What's on your plate?
Monday, Jun 6, 2011
Is your eating choice a pyramid or a plate? After two decades of trying to make us eat off a pyramid, the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) has finally figured out that we really eat off a round plate.
Nobody could easily figure out what the USDA was trying to tell us with their pyramid advice on the most nutritious foods we should be eating and in what proportions. The U.S citizen kept falling off the pyramid plan, and we packed on the pounds. With the new plate-shaped nutrition guidelines, it will now be much easier for the hungry consumer to figure out what foods and in which proportions should be on the dinner plate. For more detailed advice check out the full nutrition guidelines at ChooseMyPlate.gov.
In 2008 surveys found that Americans were eating only 8% of their daily calories in fruits and vegetables! Forty-one percent of their calories were made up of added fats and sugars! No wonder we are now so overweight.
With the new plate guidelines, fruits and vegetables are recommended to cover half of the plate, with vegetables taking up a majority of the half. Grains and protein (mainly meat and fish) should occupy the other half of the plate, with grains covering most of this half. Of course, you should make sure that the plate itself is not too large. A small side-dish is reserved for dairy.
When you sit down for supper tonight, take note of what proportions of the plate is covered by each type of food. Vegetables should cover at least a third of the plate, and protein should be less than a quarter. No sugary, fatty foods should be in sight. They should be reserved for a treat on a special occasion.
Now that you have a clear view of your plate of healthy food, stop by the Y and use your healthy fuel sources for some fun exercise.