The USDA and First Lady Michelle Obama have recently released updated nutrition and diet guidelines, called MyPlate. Replacing the traditional food pyramid, MyPlate divides a plate into four wedges – fruit, vegetables, protein, and grains, plus a side of dairy – to represent the recommended break down of food groups for each meal. According to the First Lady, “When mom or dad comes home from a long day of work, we’re already asked to be a chef, a referee, a cleaning crew. So it’s tough to be a nutritionist, too. But we do have time to take a look at our kids’ plates. As long as they’re half full of fruits and vegetables, and paired with lean proteins, whole grains and low-fat dairy, we’re golden. That’s how easy it is.”
The USDA has also created a website chock full of nutrition tips, recipes, and interactive tools for the public to use as an accompanying resource for healthy eating.
Federal dietary guidelines have come a long way, evidenced by the 1940’s Guide to Good Eating wheel below, and the first food guide was created in 1916. Click here for a more detailed version of the history of USDA food guides.