Wednesday, April 20, 2005

Eat Your Veggies

Here's the new 2005 Food Guide Pyramid, designed to accompany the new 2005 Dietary Guidelines:

Click on it. It will take you to the site you helped develop with your taxes, called There you can enter your age, gender, and activity level, and it will regurgitate a pyramid just for you.

Be prepared to spend some time clicking and reading but not really walking away with knowledge you haven't already heard on the news, from your parents, from food package labels, or that can be summed up better than "Eat your veggies."

About The New Design
The new pyramid replaced the old horizontally-placed food groups (see diagram on the right) with vertical ones. I don't get how the shape of a pyramid sends an inherent message anymore, but they kept it. (The Grocery Manufacturers of America, a powerful food trade association was happy they did.) Before, foods at the wide bottom were meant to communicate the idea of foundation-foods, ones you wanted to pack into your diet. Foods at the narrow top were ones you were advised to eat sparingly.

Will this new vertically striped pyramid do the trick? If simplicity is a model for success, it has a steep climb.

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