Back to Food and Diet The Food Guide Pyramid

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One Size Doesn't Fit All

The 2005 USDA Dietary Guidelines -- the "food pyramid" if you will -- reflects the latest understanding of nutrition. The science behind the new pyramid recognizes that individual needs vary by age and activity level, and the web site will help you determine your specific nutritional needs. Gone are the "eat 6-11 servings from the bread group." Instead, you create a customized food pyramid based on your age, gender, and activity level. For example, the amount of milk recommended varies from two cups per day for children ages 2-8 to three cups per day for everyone else. (See Milk Guidelines.)

The new recommendations cover these four themes:1

The New Food Pyramid

The new food pyramid breaks food down into grains, vegetables, fruit, oils, milk, and meat. Within each category are a variety of foods, some better than others. For example, whole grain products are better for you than foods made from highly refined grains. Think rolled oats instead of sugar sweetened cereal for breakfast and you get the idea. This table shows each food pyramid component:

Larger Image | More Information About Grains
Larger Image | More Information About Vegetables
Larger Image | More Information About Fruits
Larger Image | More Information About Oils
Larger Image | More Information About Milk
Larger Image | More Information About Meat

For Additional Information

Information About the Old Food Guide Pyramid

Updated April 20, 2005

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