The United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) has had a lot on its plate recently. And, it’s all because of their new food icon, called MyPlate.
This colorful visual teaches Americans how to make healthier food choices by giving people a picture of portion sizes for certain foods.
“This new icon is a great nutrition tool and supports many of the food recommendations we make for reducing cancer risks,” says Vicki Piper, R.D., L.D., an MD Anderson dietician.
That’s because MyPlate focuses on filling most of your plate with plant foods, like vegetables, fruits and grains. And, making these healthier food choices can play a big part in helping to reduce your risks of cancer.
“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 First Lady Michelle Obama when MyPlate launched.
Even better news? There’s not just an icon to help you serve up a healthier plate. The government also has created several online tools to help you make MyPlate part of your family’s daily diet.
Here are two of our favorite USDA online tools.
10 tips to a great plate
“Choose My Plate” is one-page cheat sheet is a great print-out to put on your refrigerator! It gives you easy ideas for:
- balancing calories
- foods to eat more often
- foods to eat less often
Your daily food plan
Not sure how to make the MyPlate icon work for you? Try the Daily Food Plan. This interactive tool tells you how many servings of fruits, veggies, protein, grains and dairy you need, based on your age, weight and height. And, it tells you how many cups of different types of fruits and veggies you should aim for each week.
Need more? It also recommends related websites where you can find additional advice on each food group.
Courtesy of MD Anderson.
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