You may have found that the Food Guide Pyramid serves as a handy tool to explain the basics of healthy eating to your clients. But note that the times are “a’changin’” and the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) is going along with the times by revamping the guidelines on which the pyramid is based, to make sure they reflect the latest scientific and medical knowledge. Currently in the revision process, the new guidelines are slated to be published in winter 2005.

Proposed revisions (which may be changed before the guidelines and pyramid are published) include

  • using 12 calorie levels (ranging from 1,000 to 3,200)
    instead of the three levels (1,600; 2,200; and
    2,800) in the current version
  • recommending different calorie levels based
    on activity level (sedentary, low active
    and active)
  • using cups and ounces vs. servings
    in consumer materials when
    suggesting daily amounts of food
    groups and subgroups