I'd been listening to NPR the other morning on my way to work and happened to catch a story concerning how the USDA has improved the food pyramid. You already know the one that I'm writing about, grains at the base, then the vegetables and fruits, meat in addition to dairies after which a little place on the top for oils, fats and sweets. Simply no first grade program could have been complete with out a detailed course about the good old food pyramid.

Well, the USDA has chosen to not only give the food pyramid a completely new look, but alter the way we consider our meals. The new My Plate has taken the pyramid we all know and cherish and changed it to produce a plate.

The plate offers four daily food groups instead of the 6 that we grew up with. Vegetables and grains make up the bulk of the advised nutritional intake along with fruit and healthy proteins filling in the gaps. Dairy will now be recommended as being a cup of milk and has been positioned off to the side, possibly recommending that dairy ought to be used more moderately than anything else.

In addition to the fresh look are a few fresh suggestions, that I think are not merely excellent suggestions to educate our little ones, but also for losing weight in general. There has been a lot of dispute regarding the look of our former food pyramid, with some people suggesting that the new My Plate fails to get results. Nevertheless, It's my opinion that the new My Plate along with the nutritional tips made by the USDA essentially stock up quite well. Let us take a look at some of these recommendations. 

Balance Your Calories
One of several strategies is to balance calorie consumption by eating more compact servings and spending some time to relish your food. It is an outstanding idea and it has been shown that choosing smaller servings every day rather than 1-2 massive meals will help you to shed pounds.

Consuming smaller servings of foods is something which Europeans are accustomed to doing, in fact, it had been something a lot of Americans used to be accustomed to at one point too. Eating less and more frequently is easy enough to carry out. I think the important doubt here is whether restaurants will follow suit by offering smaller sized, more reasonable portions.

Increase Healthy Food

My Plate suggests increasing our consumption of healthy food by basing at least half of what we eat on a daily basis around fruits and veggies. Even though some people harped on the plate not being specific enough, the USDA website does feature suggestions regarding how to make this happen. They highly recommend raw as well as steamed produce over frozen and also fresh fruit instead of canned.

An additional recommendation is to try to raise the number of whole grain products that you ingest to at least one 50 % of your day-to-day consumption. While this is an excellent suggestion, I think taking in 100% of one's daily grain daily allowance as whole grains would be a lot better and result in increased weight loss and wellbeing.

Reduce Sugar and Sodium

Looks like a pretty wise solution, yet it is quite simple to unwittingly consume foods which have a very high sugar or sodium content with out actually realizing it. One of many guidelines that the new My Plate identifies  is to make a practice of examining food labels to determine the amount of sodium that they contain. Don't forget when reading labels that the USDA advises fewer than 2,300 mg a day.

One more recommendation is to drink plenty of water as opposed to sugary drinks which is a rather simple strategy to decrease your daily sugar intake. Research shows that people tend to gain the most weight by what they drink, rather than what they eat. A lot of us don't even consider the quantity of sugar we place into our bodies when drinking a can of soda or perhaps juice.

The Summary

Even though the new My Plate is vastly different from the food pyramid most of us have come to know and love, it gives America a different way of thinking about food in addition to portion size. Change can be challenging, especially when that change occurs to anything we have been so acquainted with. Nevertheless, from time to time, change is beneficial.