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News and analysis on the global poultry
and animal feed industries.
on January 1, 2014

Harvard Medical School adjusts My Plate poultry recommendation

The USDA abandoned the food pyramid, introduced to Americans in 1992 as the guide to stimulate healthy eating habits. Often addressed but less understood, the pyramid was recently replaced by “My Plate,” a fresh, additional governmental effort to slow down the sharpness of the obesity incidence in the U.S. Unveiled to the American society by Michele Obama, My Plate recommends what proportion of each nutrient must be consumed to secure a healthy daily diet.

In spite of the innovation and renewed goodwill behind the new guide, My Plate is in the center of a controversy originated from the understanding of Harvard Medical School's nutrition and public health experts about the tool. They say USDA's My Plate is imprecise, and justify the statement by saying the (generic) recommendation for increased intake of vegetables lacks the information on which vegetable must be consumed. The doctors go further saying, “A potato is a vegetable, but when eaten as French fries it is fully condemnable”.

To correct the inaccuracy of the USDA's My Plate and thus offering a more specific and more accurate recommendations for following a healthy diet, the Harvard Medical School's Harvard Health Publications and nutrition experts at the Harvard School of Public Health proposed a list of food they consider to be healthy and came up with a “Healthy Eating Plate." Among the recommendations, the consumption of poultry, which to date was totally circumscribed to chicken only.
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