Will the Plate Break? New Controversy about MyPlate
According to an article by the Harvard School for Public Health Nutrition Source Update, the government's new plate icon is fragile. Of course they developed the Healthy Eating Pyramid and only grudgingly admit that the government's MyPlate may be an improvement on the previous government icon, MyPyramid.
Dr. Walter Willett, Fredrick John Stare Professor of Epidemiology and Nutrition, and chair of the Dept. of Nutrition at Harvard School of Public Health, suggests that "the most important issues are in the details not captured by the icon." Specifically, "What type of grain?What source of proteins? What fats are used to prepare the vegetables and grains?
The devil is always in the details, and it is hard to expect most people to search out the best choices. Willet finds that the overemphasis on dairy and unclear messaging about red meat repeat the problems of the Dietary Guidelines. But, Tom Vilsack, Secretary of Agriculture, counters that the lack of detail is intentional. The plate is "not designed to tell you specifically what to eat. It is designed to tell you the proper proportions."
Dr. Willett finds the biggest problem with MyPlate is that it does not address junk food. That is also probably intentional, because junk food does not belong on our plates at all.