Why Did They Change the Food Pyramid?


Quick Answer

The food pyramid was resoundingly criticized from inception for promoting consumption of huge amounts of grain and discouraging consumption of good fats, says the Washington Post. An early attempt to revise the pyramid in 2005 was declared impossible to understand, says the Huffington Post. The My Plate graphic was released in 2010 as a response.

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The Washington Post says that the food pyramid was released in 1992 with an intended goal of being simpler than the prior guide, which presented the basic food groups as colored squares. Critics of the food pyramid held that it was based on unsupported theories about dietary fat being linked to heart disease and was more influenced by lobbying from grain farmers than by actual nutritional science, reports Healthy Eating Politics. The Atlantic says nutritionists objected to the pyramid's promotion of too many grains and not enough vegetables, and the food industry objected to the idea that some foods were better than others.

The My Plate graphic has a had a more positive reception than either version of the food pyramid. It is more readily usable and recognizable, reports the Huffington Post. Some critics still object to the My Plate's promotion of high-carbohydrate low fat diets, says Healthy Eating Politics.

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