Tuesday, April 19, 2005

12 New Food Pyramids

Concerned about steadily expanding waistlines, the government flipped the food pyramid on its side, adding a staircase for exercise and giving consumers 12 individually-tailored models for improving their eating habits.

Inside the pyramid released Tuesday, rainbow-colored bands representing different food groups run vertically from the tip to the base. The old single, triangle-shaped pyramid had a horizontal presentation of food categories that many found confusing.

Exercise is key to the new system. Fitness expert Denise Austin delivered a pep talk about the recommended 30 minutes of physical activity, represented on the new pyramids by the figure of a person climbing steps toward the tip. Also in store are new Internet tools to help follow the guidelines.

The new guide, dubbed "MyPyramid," encourages Americans to customize their diet and exercise regime along 12 models geared to specific calorie needs and levels of physical activity.

Food groups are represented by six different colors: Orange for grains, green for vegetables, red for fruits, yellow for oils, blue for milk products and purple for meats and beans. The bands are wider for grains, vegetables, milk products and fruits, because people should eat more of them.

Agriculture Secretary Mike Johanns called the new guide "a system of information to help consumers understand how to put nutrition recommendations into action."

Read the rest here.

As we live longer diet and exercise will play an ever increasing role in our quality of life.

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