American families are talking about their food, where it comes from, how it is grown and food safety. But for many families, it really boils down to this: How do I know that my kids are eating healthy and staying active? How can I create a balanced meal without paying an arm and a leg? And how do I incorporate MyPlate into my meals?
For nearly 20 years, the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) promoted an image for healthy eating that became standard: the food guide pyramid. In 2011, the traditional pyramid image was replaced with MyPlate, a plate icon divided into sections for different food groups: fruits, vegetables, grains, protein and dairy. The plate is also accompanied with messages to encourage consumers to make healthy choices.
MyPlate resources are available at choosemyplate.gov, including tracking weight management and calories, ideas for physical activity, healthy eating on a budget, sample menus and recipes and much more.
MyPlate focuses on the concept that all food groups and colors are essential to every meal. And kids will be more excited about eating healthy too.
Not convinced? Check out the book, “How Did that Get Into my Lunchbox?” written by Chris Butterworth and illustrated by Lucia Gaggiotti. This book takes an engaging and accurate look at the steps involved in producing common foods. It also incorporates healthy eating tips and ideas for developing complete and colorful menus. Throw in eye-catching illustrations and this will be a page turner for any child age 5-8.
“How Did that Get Into my Lunchbox?” was selected as the American Farm Bureau Foundation for Agriculture Book of the Year for 2012. For more accurate agriculture books at any reading level, visit the American Farm Bureau Foundation for Agriculture Book Database.