Tuesday, September 27, 2011

USDA vs Harvard: Which Plate Do You Choose?

A few months ago the USDA released updated nutritional guidelines, doing away with the pyramid and instead presenting us with The Plate, which looks kinda like a cateteria-style tray with little spots so our food doesn't touch each other. This is what it looks like in case you forgot:

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Now, the good men at Hahvad have come up with their own version, which they're calling the Healthy Eating Plate. It looks like this:

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The main diff? The Harvard School of Public Health recommends drinking water instead of milk, eating more veggies than fruit, and includes a little bottle of oil to represent healthy fats.  According to this article on Life Hacker,  Harvard contends that their plate is free of the politics that generated the USDA's plate, and therefore more credible. Personally, I'm a fan of the second, partly because I enjoy conspiracy theories and partly because I think it is actually better. I like the inclusion of water over milk, the smaller emphasis on grains, the little guy running in the corner, and the liquid representation of healthy fats. It's also less of a sell-out to the food industries. Of course, it might be a sell-out to someone else, I don't know.

Regardless of the plate you choose, they have most of their messages in common: eat real food, be sane about it, and get out there and get healthy!  What do you think? Which do you choose?  


Ellen said...

Another reason why the Harvard plate is "better" is that they actually explain, in plain English, how to intepret and apply each of their serving suggestions.

I love that they say of vegetables, "... and french fries don't count."

Healthy Heather said...

LOL! Exactly! And beer does not count as grains.