DOI: 10.1094/CFW-51-0104 |
The New Food Guide Pyramid: Recommendations on Grains, Fruits, and Vegetables
T. S. Kahlon. Western Regional Research Center, USDA-ARS, Albany, CA. Cereal Foods World 51(3):104-107.
The new 2005 USDA Food Guide Pyramid recommends controlling caloric consumption from all food groups for males and females depending on age and physical activity level. Moderate to vigorous physical activity for 30–60 min/day is recommended for healthy living at all ages. The redesigned pyramid emphasizes meeting 100% of nutrient needs for protein, vitamins, and minerals, while controlling the amounts of fat, cholesterol, and sodium consumed. The pyramid also recommends that males and females 4 years of age or older consume 3 cups of milk per day for healthy, strong bones. In addition, grains should provide 60% of calories consumed, mainly in the form of complex carbohydrates. Half of the servings of grains consumed should be from whole grains to increase dietary fiber intake and derive benefits from nutrients present in the bran and germ. Regular consumption of whole grains, fresh fruits, and deeply colored vegetables has been linked to maintaining ideal body weight and healthy bowel function, as well as lowering the risk of premature degenerative diseases. Americans are not meeting many of their dietary requirements and need to increase their consumption of grains, fruits, and vegetables by 20–25% and dietary fiber consumption by 40–50%.