Have you taken a look at our USDA food pyramid recently? It’s gone through a few incarnations since the “carbs on the bottom, fats on top” cartoon version most of us remember. And it’s gotten a lot more confusing. Earlier in October, GOOD magazine issued a challenge: redesign our food pyramid.We have some sympathy for the USDA. It’s not easy to create an infographic that can be comprehended at a glance, but that still relays information on food groups, how much of them to eat, and what they mean by a serving size. Plus they’re trying to incorporate the need for exercise, moderation, and individuality. That can start to be a lot.
And then there’s the whole question about whether these dietary guidelines are the right ones to be teaching in the first place. As Michael Pollan and others have pointed out, nutrition information is often conflicting on such key points as which foods constitute a healthy diet and portion size. GOOD also wonders if including information on the carbon footprint of food might also be important.
GOOD won’t be announcing the winner of their Design a Better Food Pyramid project until later this month. Until then, what do you think our food pyramid should look like? What information should it show?