All of us today are facing an increasing array of nutritional challenges due to the way in which we eat; what we eat; how much we eat; and the way that we live our lives. Eating a right amount of food may sound daunting, but for many, just a few small changes can make a big difference to our overall health – and you don’t need to compromise on taste and enjoyment. When we talk about balance diet, the first that came in our mind is the food pyramids.
Do you know what is food pyramid and how it was invented? A food pyramid is a pyramid shaped guide of healthy foods divided into sections to show the recommended intake for each food group. The first food pyramid was published in Sweden in 1974. The most widely known food pyramid was introduced by the United States Department of Agriculture in the year 1992, was updated in 2005, and then replaced in 2011. Originally, the food pyramid was invented because of the high food prices in 1972, and it was to deliver the idea of “basic food” that were both cheap and nutrious.
Anna Britt Agnsäter, head of the test kitchen at KF, a consumer co-op that worked with the Board, held a lecture the next year on how to illustrate these food groups.
Attendee Fjalar Clemes suggested a triangle displaying basic foods at the base. Agnsäter developed the idea into the first food pyramid, which was introduced to the public in 1974 in KF’s Vi magazine. As we go through the pyramid, there is actually about six classes of food. At the base of the pyramid, is where the carbohydrate is. It takes the biggest area of the pyramid compared to other classes of food. This is because, carbohydrate provide the most energy to our body. Therefore we need to consume carbohydrate liberally. The recommended amount of serving for carbohydrate is about 6-11 serving a day. Next, we go to the vitamins and dietary fibre.
Vitamin is essential to our body to protect the body from various types of diseases and maintain the health of the body and it is divided by two categories : water soluble vitamin, B, C and fat soluble vitamin, A,D,E and K. Dietary fibre is made up of cellulose which cannot be digested by the body. It is required in small quantity as it is use to prevent constipation. The recommended serving for each group is 3-5 serving a day. Now, we move to the upper level, which is called the protein group. Protein is required for building new cell for growth and to replace damage tissue. Basically, protein is made up of carbon, hydrogen, oxygen and nitrogen.
Lack of protein my cause a person to have kwashiorkor. It is necessary to take protein 2-3 serving per day. Last but not least, the fats group. Fat is the group of food that we need to consume sparingly. This is because, fat has the most slowest rate of digestion. Fat functions as heat insulator. It also provide energy and function as a protector for the internal organ such as heart and kidney. Therefore, food pyramid is a great guide to good nutrition. So if you’re not sure you’re eating the fruits and vegetables that you need, or think your diet is a little heavy in fat, take a glance at the bright stripes of the food pyramid — they’ll help keep you on track to make sure you’re achieving your nutrition goals.