It will get worse: the new “MyPlate”

It will get worse. Faced with decades of explosively increasing numbers of obese people and diabetics the US government answer is to find a more effective way to give the exact same fat phobic advice.

Here is MyPlate. The same failed advice as in the old food pyramid, with a sparkling new $2 million design. The stupidity calls for some humor:

FatHead: The USDA explains “MyPlate”

CMWO: There. That looks better.

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18 Comments

  1. Jon
    @Doc

    Washington DC-based 5000-member organization for physicians called PCRM has provided alternative plate model for disease prevention. Grains, Legumes, Fruits and Veggies. What would be your thoughts about is, Doc? Based on scientific literature all the way from the 1950's we'd have to be quite creative to figure out the benefits of having high-fat content products such as dairy and meat in the plate. What do you think? Are you interested discussion the issue any further?

    http://pcrm.org/health/powerplate/

  2. Haha, go FatHead! The answer is brilliant in it's obviousness. And "Fruits" too?
  3. Jennifer
    Please ban the troll.
  4. Jon
    You guys are right. What a stupid idea of me. Who on earth would want to eat sugary-fruits let alone discuss these matters. We all know the truth. We need animal proteins to be strong and clever. And ofcourse fat to be thin. It's all very obvious. Fat is way to go.
  5. Funderaren
    Jon we have nothing against discussing these matter but when you take a theory as truth is not much to discuss.
  6. Eric Schmitz
    Jon, we are quite familiar with PCRM, its relationship to PETA, and the circumstances surrounding the unauthorized release of Dr. Atkins medical records following his death. You should not expect to find a receptive audience here.
  7. Milton
    @Jon: I understand your objection to the 'fruit is candy' topic, as I feel the same. Yes, fruits have sugar, but eating an apple and a banana strikes me as much healthier than a Snickers bar.

    If the discussion so far has confirmed anything, it is my belief that research into diets and nutrition is very scattered and heavily influenced by politics and money. The rampant misuse of observational data has allowed researchers to claim "proof" where none exists, and the use of dollars by both government and corporate concerns has pushed researchers to misrepresent results and ignore confounding data and results.

    In all my reading, there are very few factors that all parties agree on. Those seem to be the best starting point for diet and health. They are: reduce or eliminate processed and refined sugars. Do not smoke. Control your alcohol intake. Create a caloric deficit in order to lose weight, then find a maintenance level once you reach your target. There is some debate on the part that exercise plays in weight loss, and proponents of the concept of a metabolic advantage will warn against a simplified approach to the calories in/out method. But overall those seem to be the areas that all agree on.

    Other than that, there are all sorts of theories, and I have yet to see any of them tested reliably and showing a repeated trend in tests where confounders are removed or accounted for. That by itself shows that the theories in question are flawed. I will say it again; there are no reliable studies showing a direct causal link between fat and heart disease, between cholesterol and heart disease or between meat and ANY disease. Period. Linking to a few more dozen observational studies and sloppily-researched books do not change that fact.

    Anecdotal data and experiences indicate what we tend to suspect: that we are different in ways that science may not have pin-pointed yet, and thus we must find the diet that serves each of us best, instead of simply following someone's diet advice. There are plenty of examples of people who fared badly on any of a number of diets (low/high carb, low/high fat, etc) and people who are healthy and fit after years of those very same diets. To insist that one is wrong or dangerous or doesn't work requires that we ignore the multitude of success stories.

    If one person can link to dozens of 'studies' indicating that LCHF works better than low-fat, and another person can link to dozens of 'studies' that indicate THE VERY OPPOSITE, then you realize that there is no clear proof that either approach is 100% right or wrong. If you do, you are simply rejecting what is inconvenient and accepting only what confirms your bias. That is not an open-minded approach.

    I will leave it with that, because I tire of pointing out such a basic and simple truth about the state of research and understanding of health and diet, and having it ignored. People do not like to think that they do not have all of the answers to such an important issue as diet and health. I know it scared me a lot to keep hearing different data and theories, but in the end I have worked to learn more and adapt my diet and exercise regimen. Why would I leave something so critical in the hands of a politically-motivated book author or random blog on the web?!?!

  8. Milton
    In regards to the main post by the Doc, I think it is very important to note the URL the government uses for the "food plate." CHOOSE MY PLATE. In other words, the government wants people to let it define their diet choices, instead of learning about it themselves and making smart choices that work for them.

    This is why we are so fat and in poor health in the USA, we let bureaucrats and lobbyists make our food choices for us! The most important factor in our health and enjoyment of life, and we leave it in the hands of people who require $2 million just to create an ugly chart.

  9. "This is why we are so fat and in poor health in the USA, we let bureaucrats and lobbyists make our food choices for us! The most important factor in our health and enjoyment of life, and we leave it in the hands of people who require $2 million just to create an ugly chart."

    I agree with your first statement, but with reservations. Americans are notoriously bad about taking advice, whether it's from the government or elsewhere. In this case, I am glad they are bad about taking advice, but (in general) they don't seem to be doing so great on their own, either, or we wouldn't find ourselves where we are now.

    The second problem I have with this is that the government (probably - I am not all that up on my politics) took over this role without specific invitation by the public to do so (the old "I'm from the government and I'm here to help" nonsense), and I don't really believe it's an appropriate role of the government to be dictating our food choices. (Admittedly adults are allowed to choose, but when these guidelines are set policy, the schoolchildren do not get a choice - even, in some cases, when the parents prefer to send lunch with the child.)

  10. Chrisnpiggies
    All I know is I tried the pyramid for years and years and spent alot of money eating alot of organic whole grains and for memberships at the gym and was up to 170 pounds at 5'1", obese by BMI standards. I was always very athletic, ran cross country, Airborne in the Army. Now I couldn't walk across the room to answer the phone without huffing and puffing. I'm 44, and until 6 years ago, felt so healthy my goal was to live to be 109 so I could tell everyone about the "bicentennial" quarters we had back in1976, and everyone could ask me what a "quarter" was. But I was feeling like I wouldn't make it to age 60, and if I did, I'd be crippled and in pain and not enjoying being old. Then I learned about LCHF and ditched all the organic sugary yogurt, whole grain pasta, and corn oil and started eating pork roasts, chicken with the skin, etc and my husband and both lost 25 pounds like nothing and feel like kids again. So, I was brainwashed with the "everybody knows cholesterol in eggs is bad for you" LIE and thank God for good people like the Diet Doc to help folks become healthier by eating what were intended to eat, not sticks and twigs.
  11. Milton
    @gharkness: I agree that we're bad about taking advice, though dietary guidelines have had a significant influence on what is made available to us. The Doc has shown some of the foods that are offered for sale here, and it is an epidemic. It's very difficult to avoid vegetable oils and processed sugar, which are put into lots of our foods. One frustration I've had now that I am eating better, is finding foods that do not contain a lot of substitutes and preservatives and refined sugar or unnatural oils.

    Eating right is a battle because you have to make a real effort to avoid foods that are bad for you and find healthy foods that do not contain unhealthy additives or have had the fat stripped from them. And doctors here are taught that cholesterol can't go low enough. My doctor was very concerned when my cholesterol was 243. She did not bat an eye when aggressive statin use dropped it to 99. I wish I'd known then what I know now, because I was at far greater risk of death at 99 than I ever will be at 243!

  12. Funderaren
    Goverment is just part of the problem. People try to scare us from fat on just every direction. Watched an episode of the doctors today, and they all pointed out how important it was to eat low fat products. even a low carber like Tyra Banks is scared of fat.

    We get pounded from everywere that fat is bad.

  13. Sjovall
    @Jon:

    Read "Good Calories Bad Calories" with massive references. Organizations like the PCRM and CSPI seem to be driven by the old saying "That if the facts don't fit the theory, they must be disposed of!"

  14. Bumlingen
    @Jon: Read from your own link:

    Be sure to include a reliable source of vitamin B12, such as any common multiple vitamin or fortified foods.

    Veeerrry Natural....

  15. Margaretrc
    #7 @Milton "@Jon: I understand your objection to the 'fruit is candy' topic, as I feel the same. Yes, fruits have sugar, but eating an apple and a banana strikes me as much healthier than a Snickers bar."

    True, but does that necessarily make fruit--especially the type of fruit that is bred to be ultra sweet and loaded with fructose, which is what is mostly available these days--healthy? Whole grains are a better option than refined, but just how healthy are grains at all? The jury is still out on the fruit issue, but there is quite a bit of information (biochemical, not observational) out there that points to excess fructose as causing some serious metabolic problems--building up fatty deposits in the liver, raising triglycerides and the damaging VLDL, and possibly instigating insulin resistance to name a few. "Sugar, The Bitter Truth" @ http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dBnniua6-oM is only one of many lectures I have watched lately that make me wonder if sugar, even if packaged in with the fiber in fruit, is as healthy as we've always been led to believe. Food for thought--that's all. I'm not saying eating bananas is going to give you fatty liver disease or diabetes, especially if your metabolism is not messed up already, but there is still some reason to exercise caution and practice moderation--particularly by anyone whose metabolism has been messed up by decades of eating a low fat, high carbohydrate diet. I do believe the (biochemical as well as epidemiological) evidence against that type of diet is pretty overwhelming and my personal experience supports that belief. I weighed my heaviest ever, before or since, after more than 10 years of following a low fat diet, including a goodly number of years as a vegetarian. Eating more fat and fewer (not no) carbohydrates enabled me to lose most of the fat I'd gained. Exercise was always part of my routine, so it wasn't a significant factor in either the weight gain or loss.

  16. Hi,
    I collected together a few of the best myplate alternatives from the web:
    http://paleozonenutrition.wordpress.com/2011/06/04/myplate-alternatives/
    Hope you enjoy

    Cheers
    Julianne

  17. Zepp
up

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