Forget the food pyramid and take a closer look at your plate, suggested First Lady Michelle Obama, Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack, and Surgeon General Regina Benjamin at a news conference earlier today. As part of Mrs. Obama’s campaign against obesity, they unveiled the federal government’s new healthy eating icon, MyPlate, to help remind people to make better food choices.
The new design features a plate split into four sections: fruits, veggies, grains, and protein. A smaller circle sits next to the plate to represent dairy products.
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“This is a quick, simple reminder for all of us to be more mindful of the foods that we’re eating and as a mom, I can already tell how much this is going to help parents across the country,” said Mrs. Obama. “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.”
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MyPlate will be used in an educational campaign about healthier eating habits, including an initial message to make fruits and vegetables fill half a plate, reports the New York Times. Later messages will address eating smaller portions, switching to fat-free or low-fat dairy products, and substituting water for sugary drinks. For more information on the new campaign, check out ChooseMyPlate.gov.
Do you think the new MyPlate icon will help change your family’s eating habits?