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Same as the Mediterranean, the Vegetarian pyramid was created by the organization Oldways traditional forms and Preservation Trust, with the scientific collaboration of the universities of Cornwell and Harvard.
According to the American Dietetic Association, appropriately planned vegetarian diets, including total vegetarian or vegan diets, are healthful, nutritionally adequate, and may provide health benefits in the prevention and treatment of certain diseases.
Why is nutrition so confusing? Isn't amazing that we, human beings, after 200 thousand years of evolution have not yet been able to discover what is the ideal diet for the human body?...
The first nutritional problem we seem to encounter is confusion; we are not really sure what we should, or should not eat. Our confusion and skepticism increase even more, as we listen to the experts in the field contradicting one another on their own views - and their own financial interests - leaving us all confuse and disappointed following one diet after another.
Everyone has an opinion on the optimal human diet, and they’re all convinced they are right. The current state of nutritional research, and how the media reports on it, virtually guarantees confusion. “What is the optimal human diet? .. there’s no such thing as one optimal human diet for all, we all are different and have different needs, however, there are some foods humans are designed to eat.
The best thing we can do, is to remain curious, open-minded, and let's put in practice some common sense.
There are many different forms to eat, however, most people fall in one of the following categories:
Omnivorous: Refers to those that eat plant-based food, and food from animal sources and their derived products, like milk, cheese, eggs, etc..daily or most days of the week.
Vegetarianism: Refers to a mostly plant-based diet plus the consumption of products derived from animal sources- eggs and dairy- without the consumption of animal flesh.
Semi-vegetarian: This refers to those who are mostly vegetarian but consume the flesh of animals very sporadically once, twice a month, or so.
Pesco-vegetarian: Refers to those vegetarians that consume fish and sea products.
Veganism: Refers to those that consume 0% of animal products. Their diet is based 100% on Plant-based food.
Links to read:
Why the Mediterranean diet is so good for your heart. Harvard Women's Health Watch.
MyPlate is the latest nutrition guide from the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA).
It is divided into four sections of approximately:
40 percent vegetables
30 percent grains
20 percent protein,
10 percent fruits
Accompanied by a smaller circle representing dairy, such as a glass of milk or a yogurt cup.
At the base of the pyramid, the emphasis is placed on physical activity and social connections. The environment and our social connections are of great influence in helping us maintain a healthier or less healthy life.
Going up in the pyramid, are the main foods that should be consumed daily, such as whole grains, fruits, vegetables, beans, herbs, spices, nuts and healthy fats, such as olive oil.
Fish and seafood products would typically be eaten at least twice a week. And dairy products, in moderate portions. Eggs and poultry are part of the Mediterranean diet, moderately (1-2 times a week). But red meats and sweets are rarely consumed.
Water and wine (for those who drink) are typical drinks, avoiding sodas and sugary liquids.
The Healthy Eating Plate,was designed by nutrition experts at Harvard School of Public Health to address deficiencies in the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA)’s MyPlate. The Healthy Eating Plate provides detailed guidance in a simple format to help people make the best eating choices.
Diet Groups & Food Pyramids
U.S. Department of Agriculture. U.S. Department of Health and Human Services.
The Mediterranean food pyramid, also called 'Med Diet' is recognized as the "gold standard" eating pattern that promotes good long-term health.
In 1993, several organizations such as Old WayTraditional Forms, the Harvard School of Public Health and the European Office of the World Health Organization, made the Mediterranean diet even more popular when they created the food pyramid called "The Mediterranean Food Pyramid". Reflecting in this, a traditional way of eating of the countries that surround the Mediterranean.
Especially recognized by science for its ability to protect the heart by reducing the risks of heart disease, stroke and deaths from heart disease by 30% compared to a regular diet low in fat.
The Med Diet focuses primarily on the consumption of many fruits, vegetables, whole grains, fish, nuts and olive oil, emphasizing the choice of food more intelligently, and not necessarily deprive us of them. A food pyramid emphasizes the main food groups at the bottom, and food to eat less at the top.