Karen Ensle EdD, RD, FADA, CFCS
Family & Community Health Sciences Educator
Rutgers Cooperative Extension of Union County
Recommended strategies for taking small steps to eat healthy and balance your calories were released as "Choose MyPlate" on June 2, 2011. The United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) announced this new visual icon to help people make healthier food choices. MyPlate is a simple picture of a plate that represents the proportions of food one should consume including fruit, vegetables, protein, and grains with dairy as the beverage.
You can easily notice that half of the plate should be filled with fruits and vegetables. The plate icon also shows the relationship of grains to protein foods. Although protein is an important part of our diet, the amount of protein consumed should be limited to small portions. Dairy is represented in the graphic as an important component of a meal with an emphasis on consuming low-fat or fat free dairy foods.
The USDA makes the following recommendations for the American diet:
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