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MyPlate Management

Recently I learned that many people don’t know much about MyPlate and where it originated. Many of us know the food pyramid which was originally published in the 1990s and was ridiculed for promoting impractical diets and inaccurate information. Since then, the U.S Department of Agriculture (USDA) replaced the food pyramid with MyPlate in 2011. The goal with this switch was to encourage healthier well-rounded habits that could make an all-over difference in weight management and risks for disease. With 75 percent of Americans being in the category of overweight, something had to change.

The idea behind MyPlate is to focus on eating all 5 food groups at every single meal. This includes a protein source, vegetables, fruit, whole grains, and some type of low-fat or fat-free dairy product. The suggestion is to fill half of your plate with fruits and vegetables while the other half is to be split between your whole grain source and protein source. With the visual representation of a plate, it helps people understand what their plate should look like at every meal versus the pyramid telling you how many servings you should have.

While sticking to any meal plan can have its challenges, we can make it easier by being intentional and always switching it up. Be flexible with your foods and try new things. Make the meals you eat exciting and try different cooking methods. Eating healthy doesn’t have to be boring. You can eat different versions of the same food. For instance, you can enjoy green beans in raw form, frozen, or from a can. Different foods have different benefits. Don’t be afraid to experiment and see what you truly enjoy.

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