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August 9, 2013

The New Food Pyramid

A simple & practical guide to knowing how to eat right at every meal.

The new food pyramid is actually not a pyramid at all. I use a circle, similar to a dinner plate, and separate it into 4 equal parts, as illustrated in the photo and drawing. I find this to be more practical and useful for making good food choices. It is very easy to remember 4 categories: protein, raw vegetable, cooked vegetable, starch, plus a small amount of healthy fats.

The example illustrated is geared toward a dinner meal, however the basic guidelines can be followed at breakfast or lunch. For example at breakfast, eggs, turkey bacon, smoked salmon or yogurt may be your protein source and fruit may be in the place of raw vegetables. Flax meal, coconut or hemp oil may accompany your granola or morning porridge as a healthy source of fat. Steamed vegetables or a miso vegetable broth is an excellent lighter breakfast and I do recommend vegetables at breakfast in a scramble with eggs, tempeh, tofu, or as a simple side dish.

There are no rules for eating specific foods at certain meals, so allow yourself the freedom to explore your diet in new ways that feel good to your body. Creativity and good food planning are the keys for a healthy diet.

Examples of 4 Food Categories plus some healthy fats:

1. protein - fish, meat, poultry, legumes, yogurt, cottage cheese, etc.

2. raw vegetables - salad greens, sprouts, radish, broccoli, celery, etc.

3. cooked or steamed vegetables - green beans, cauliflower, stir-fry, curry dishes, etc.

4. starch - quinoa, rice, sweet potato, bread, injera, pasta, etc.

* healthy fats - olive, sesame or coconut oil, avocado, butter, nuts, seeds, etc.

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