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New Dietary Guide Issued By USDA

First lady Michelle Obama speaks about MyPlate

First lady Michelle Obama at unveiling of MyPlate icon by USDA

A new dietary guide was released on Thursday by the United States Department of Agriculture, with the unveiling of an icon in the shape of a plate. The plate is divided into four showing the rough proportions of the food groups that we should be eating. There are five food groups, fruits, vegetables, grains, proteins and dairy, and the icon shows roughly half of our food should be from fruits and vegetables, and the remainder from the protein, grain and dairy groups.

This visual representation called MyPlate is simple to understand, even for children, and replaces the food pyramid which has been used for about twenty years, and is considered to be too complicated. In fact some grade six children thought that because fats were at the top of the pyramid this was the best food to eat.

First Lady Michelle Obama was present at the news conference in Washington D.C. when the USDA icon was unveiled, and said “We realized that we needed something that made sense not just in classrooms or laboratories, but at dining tables and in school cafeterias. Parents don’t have the time to measure out exactly three ounces of chicken or look up how much rice or broccoli is in a serving. That has confounded me as a parent for a very long time. But we do have time to look at our kids’ plates.” She continued to say “As long as they’re eating proper portions, as long as half of their meal is fruits and vegetables along their lean proteins, whole grains and low-fat dairy, then we’re good.”

First Lady Michele Obama recently began an initiative called “Let’s Move” addressing the nation’s obesity program, which sees almost one third of children as overweight. She is optimistic that this together with the new food icon and educational material can help families to have a healthier life.

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Pat has a lifelong passion for home and garden, cultivating her own extensive lawns and gardens and providing interior decorating advice.

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