USDA says: “Make half your plate fruits and vegetables.”

June is National Fruit and Vegetable month: a very appropriate time to revise the government's guidelines on what we should be eating.

The U.S. Department of Agriculture, along with other major health organizations such as the American Heart Association and the American Cancer Society, have long stressed the importance of eating lots of fruits and vegetables as part of a  healthy diet, using the food guide pyramid as an illustration. In the past, they’ve expressed their recommendations in terms of numbers of servings daily (7-13 for adults) or numbers of cups (1 serving = ½ cup), and they continue to do so.

But what does a serving of broccoli look like? And how many baby carrots are in a cup? “Even the most well versed nutrition professionals don’t have all these measurements memorized,” the USDA says. So they’ve made it easier by suggesting that you “fill half your plate with fruits and vegetables at each meal or eating occasion “Making fruits and vegetables the focal point of every meal will help you meet your recommended amount each day, and you won’t have to do all the math!”

Of course just because they’ve made it easier for you to understand how many fruits and vegetables you need to eat every day doesn’t make it any easier to actually do it.

That’s why we take Juice Plus+: to help us “bridge the gap” between that half-a-plate of fruits and vegetables we should be eating at every meal and what we’re really able to eat.

This Time magazine article gives a useful perspective on the plate: "The USDA Ditches the Food Pyramid for a Plate".

For more information about the latest USDA dietary guidelines – including the new “half a plate” emphasis – visit Their dietary recommendations include:

Balancing Calories  

● Enjoy your food, but eat less.  

● Avoid oversized portions.    

Foods to Increase  

● Make half your plate fruits and vegetables.  

● Make at least half your grains whole grains.  

● Switch to fat-free or low-fat (1%) milk.    

Foods to Reduce  

● Compare sodium in foods like soup, bread, and frozen meals ― and choose the foods with lower numbers.  

● Drink water instead of sugary drinks.   

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