What food pyramid? A new look at the USDA’s MyPlate


First lady Michelle Obama helps unveil MyPlate. (By Susan Walsh/Associated Press)

Fruits and vegetables make up half of the USDA’s new “MyPlate” guidelines. Grains and proteins take their respective quarters, and a cup of “dairy” rests to the side. As for desserts? Forget it. First lady Michelle Obama was on hand to help unveil the plate Thursday, which now replaces the historic (and, for some, historically confusing) guidelines found within the food pyramid.

But enough about the unveiling. What does this new change look  like? Behold, a before and after reveal:

To better help you understand the new parameters, Melissa and I took a trip to The Post’s cafeteria. This slice of pizza accompanied by a chocolate cookie signifies a blatant disregard for pyramid or circle-based food guidelines, but for better or worse, it’s what we probably pick up more often than not:


The bad example, which we fed to T.J. (By Katie Rogers)

This brings us to our balanced lunch assembled along the new MyPlate guidelines: Half fruits and vegetables,a quarter of grains and a quarter of protein, flanked by skim milk. It took about five more seconds to pull together than the pizza-plus-cookie combination. Melissa did cheat by adding a piece of chocolate, but otherwise, gave it a thumbs-up.


Ta da! (By Katie Rogers)

Do you think the new guidelines are realistic? Tell us in the comments below or by using #MyPlateIS on Twitter. Find out more about MyPlate here.

@washingtonpost My main rule of what to eat: “Everything in moderation, especially moderation.” So I have pizza occasionally. #MyPlateISless than a minute ago via Twitter for Mac Favorite Retweet ReplyGunnar Helliesen
GunnarHelliesen

@washingtonpost #MyPlateIS something like that, on good days. However, protein is LESS than a qtr according to new plan. Careful!!less than a minute ago via web Favorite Retweet ReplyJamie Gluvna
JamieG818

#myplateis 75% fried meat 25% french friesless than a minute ago via web Favorite Retweet Replyrandomjeweler
randomjeweler

The new #MyPlateIS is great, but we need to improve access to healthier food for EVERYONE, not only those who can afford it.less than a minute ago via web Favorite Retweet ReplyCaren
MissMita

New MyPlate is a lot more intuitive. It’s much better than the Pyramid. Realistic? Barring allergies it seems to be. #MyPlateISless than a minute ago via web Favorite Retweet ReplyRenaissance Jack
renaissancejack

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