June 3rd, 2011
03:30 PM ET
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The U.S. Department of Agriculture has replaced the food pyramid with a more user-friendly plate icon to help Americans make healthy food choices.

We asked what your ideal plate looks like. Our editor, Kat, created her version, which consists of some not-so-healthy helpings of fried okra, cherry pie, cheese grits, pulled pork, and a glass of scotch.

So, health repercussions aside, we asked iReporters what their ‘MyPlate’ would look like. The creative souls featured above turned their plates into a pieces of art and sent them to CNN iReport.

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Filed under: iReport • MyPlate

soundoff (73 Responses)
  1. Brendan R

    Paula Gibson eats entire deserts! That CANNOT be good for her digestive tract

    June 14, 2011 at 4:59 pm |
  2. Abhi

    Whole grains & dairy do contain proteins!!!! Eye-opener :) Its funny that Dept of agriculture doesn't know that or they just want to support the meat and dairy industry...

    June 7, 2011 at 6:19 pm |
  3. nina786

    hmmm nice idea....;)

    June 7, 2011 at 11:41 am |
  4. Shari Atukorala

    WOW! some great food stuff = I love eating fast foods, however I eat in moderation....

    June 6, 2011 at 5:59 pm |
  5. Spelling Nazi

    Take a pill on the spelling issue.
    The nice lady explained her mistake in a calm, friendly & completely acceptable manner.
    If only the petty posters pointing out her mistake could have been as kind to her.

    June 6, 2011 at 8:09 am |
    • Mark

      Agred. Oh, is that one or two e's?

      June 6, 2011 at 8:15 am |
    • Spelling Nazi@Mark

      It's threee, but who's counting?

      June 6, 2011 at 8:18 am |
      • Mark@SN

        Haha! Noot us!

        June 6, 2011 at 8:20 am |
  6. Chiffonade

    Until the "food" guidelines, be they pyramid shaped, round, square or trapezoid, include exercise – they will always be incomplete. The switch from manual labor to sedentary jobs DEMANDS those calories be used. Typing fast doesn't count as exercise.

    PS – The sweet portion of the meal is spelled DESSERT, not DESERT. Desert = a very dry place.

    June 5, 2011 at 8:52 am |
  7. Nicole

    I love how Americans have already taken this tool and used it to show the junk food they consume. My opinion? The plate is a lousy attempt to get people to visualize what they should be eating but does nothing in terms of number of servings or serving size.

    June 4, 2011 at 7:44 pm |
  8. KIm

    Good on ya, Abbot :D

    June 4, 2011 at 12:33 am |
  9. Josie

    I know in my case it all depends on what I feel like eating. Some days I do really good on salads, very little meat, and water...other days I want a soda, cheeseburger and fries. My average calorie intake also veries day to day. Here is the catch though...I walk everywhere for the most part, no matter the weather. I live in a small enough town you can get to most places within 20 minutes easily. Factor in the weather and even the wind and you can easily burn all the calories you just ate within the twenty minutes before! I go with what my body needs. For me that means more red meats during winter because it provides the energy for my body to deal with the cold, and more salads and veggies during the summer. I for once within the last 3 years have been within my ideal weight and haven't been sick except for maybe once! The problem is, people still eat as though they were physically doing a hard days work, and instead sitting infront of a computer or at a desk...the less physical activity you do, the less calories you should need to function!

    June 3, 2011 at 11:28 pm |
  10. Ken

    Plate or Pyramid. Neither will work, people simply don't want the govt to tell them what to eat. Just another attempt to control us.

    June 3, 2011 at 11:12 pm |
  11. Kaihekoa

    How much money did the federal government waste on this new diagram? Security for Mrs. Obama's presentation of it is tens of thousands. I wouldn't be surprised a 1+ million was wasted for a goddamn Office ClipArt diagram.

    June 3, 2011 at 11:08 pm |
  12. V T

    Too bad, myPlate should also have a defined ideal height to signify portion control. By the way, how many myPlates are allowed in a day for a healthy diet ?

    June 3, 2011 at 11:06 pm |
  13. Paula

    Too bad adobe photoshop doesn't have spell check....I appreciate all of the comments reminding me that I should make sure that I do not enter any spelling bees anytime soon! I was doing "my plate" on the fly as I was running out the door.....my apologies to all! (my friends and I are getting a good laugh from all of the comments....LOL)

    June 3, 2011 at 10:26 pm |
  14. beth

    This is too simplistic: the pyramid may have indicated too many servings for reality - but this is too open to interpretation. Totally dumbed down – is this what Michelle thinks of her husbands constituents?

    June 3, 2011 at 10:03 pm |
    • Dee

      So true, the "plate" does not include the number of servings for each food group, or the size of a serving. It might as well just list the food groups and leave it at that – completely lacking in useful information.

      June 4, 2011 at 12:37 am |
  15. Christine

    That Adam kid is from my hometown of about 3200 people! Cool!

    June 3, 2011 at 9:39 pm |
    • aplarsen

      I'm not so much a kid, but HI from Byron!

      June 4, 2011 at 1:58 am |
  16. mike

    This P-o-S cost us 2 million dollars. Was it worth it? NO. Remember, Politicians don't care, because it's not thier money.

    June 3, 2011 at 9:32 pm |
  17. Don

    Seriously Paula? You're giving a big chunk to eating DESERTS? Would that be the Sahara, the Gobi or Death Valley?

    June 3, 2011 at 7:45 pm |
    • !food want I now

      why don't we mix all of the above? Fusion meals are trendy, and hot sand is delicious!

      June 14, 2011 at 3:13 pm |
  18. Daniel

    You can eat whatever you want as long as you control calories and eat a high protein diet. I have read dozens of studies looking at weight loss, and I know that calorie control and protein are the only major factors in a diet that actually matter.

    You don't need to eat like a caveman or health freak. You just need to eat less overall food and make sure the majority of your calories are coming from protein sources.. If you set a fiber intake goal and eat vegetables with every meal, you will optimize your diet even further.

    June 3, 2011 at 7:31 pm |
    • KIm

      What the heck do you think the caveman diet is? It's exactly what you outlined. Lots of meat, veg and fruit. Derp.

      June 4, 2011 at 12:31 am |
  19. Laureano Valor

    you do not have to eat a out a lot because of work schedule, i got a meal plan service and is great for me.

    June 3, 2011 at 6:51 pm |
  20. Jeff Burnthorn

    Why is this guy eating DESERTS? Sounds a little dry to me! I'd rather sit and have a nice DESSERT instead. Remember... there are 2 S's in dessert because you always go back for seconds!

    June 3, 2011 at 6:08 pm |
    • PaleoRules

      I thought it was because dessert is "stressed" backwards.

      June 3, 2011 at 8:13 pm |
      • !food want I now

        Let's dyslexia celebrate!

        June 14, 2011 at 3:07 pm |
  21. Zero Gods

    My plate actually looks a lot like the USDA's plate, but the protein portion comes from beans/grains. I'm amazed that the "dairy" cup made it into the official plate – such needless kowtowing to the dairy industry. How about a glass of water, America?

    June 3, 2011 at 5:51 pm |
    • Dee

      I agree. When I saw the "plate," my first thought was, why add fat and calories by including a glass of dairy, when a glass of water is so much healthier?

      June 4, 2011 at 12:32 am |
    • VastlyAmused

      Dairy does provide some value, but I would have folded it into the protein category instead of separating it.

      June 5, 2011 at 11:25 pm |
  22. Yes

    It really only makes sense to follow a paleolithic diet if you are also following a paleolithic lifestyle. So, if your day consists of waking up with a clan and organizing a hunt by chasing a mammoth off a cliff, then the paleolithic diet is good for you. Otherwise, it's just stupid.

    June 3, 2011 at 5:51 pm |
    • Laureano Valor


      June 3, 2011 at 6:51 pm |
    • KIm

      Not really. Try to read up on something before you make an ignorant assertion such as "it's stupid".

      June 4, 2011 at 12:30 am |
    • Very funny

      I work in a cubicle....what with all the downsizing we are pretty close to behaving paleolithic! Bring on the torches, raw meat, and fur g-strings!

      June 14, 2011 at 2:50 pm |
  23. Joe

    Mine would be equal parts Count Chocula, Doritos, string cheese, Pop Tarts, and Hot Pockets.
    Beverage: Hawaiian Punch, what else?
    Fork–don't need one.

    June 3, 2011 at 5:14 pm |
    • Milk of Magnesia

      What else? Ex-lax. :D

      June 6, 2011 at 7:51 am |
  24. marperl

    The plate is already out of date. Today, the USDA is unveiling a new approach to meet the ever challenging goal of eating a healthier diet. The agency is introducing My Stomach, a graphic design of the human organ divided into four quadrants to represent the four main nutritional markers: Dark Chocolate, Sunday Bacon, Bottomless Fries, and Your Favorite Adult Beverage.

    "This will make it much easier for the average American to stomach the stringent dietary guidelines we have been promoting for years," said the Assistant to the Deputy to the Vice-chair of the guidelines committee with a wry wink. "Actually, this is all a joke. C'mon, Sunday Bacon? That should obviously be Country Sausage."

    More whimsy without regret is at Thinking Out Loud, http://marperl.blogspot.com/

    June 3, 2011 at 5:11 pm |
    • BioHzrd

      Mmmmmmm....Sunday Bacon......."drool"

      June 3, 2011 at 5:20 pm |
    • Annunaki

      Bloody brilliant!

      June 3, 2011 at 7:03 pm |
    • KIm

      ROFL!!!!! Too true XD

      June 4, 2011 at 12:28 am |
  25. Plan 9

    No dessert if you can't spell it.

    June 3, 2011 at 5:07 pm |
    • Plant En

      Correction, if you spell it with 1"s", then you only get one dessert. With 2 you get egg roll.

      June 6, 2011 at 7:47 am |
      • Very funny


        June 14, 2011 at 2:48 pm |
  26. Victoria

    Its interesting that the department of agriculture is producing this and not an organization dedicated to health. I'd call that a conflict of interest since their number one money maker is meat. Protein doesn't need its own section. Loads of things have protein. Its like leaving a spot on the plate solely for meat and frankly, its unnecessary unless you want to perpetuate the idea that meat itself is necessary for protein. (I eat meat but I do so while recognizing that its horrible for the environment and frequently unhealthy)

    June 3, 2011 at 4:57 pm |
    • BioHzrd

      I while I agree to an extent, I would argue that the new guidelines recognize that the majority of Americans do consume meat as their main protein. However, the vast majority probably consume way more than they should. In that regard, I would agree that putting what most of us eat all the time (protein from meat) in the context of the a healthy diet is more feasible and would be accepted by more Americans than just righting off meat altogether.

      However, the plate doesn't say meat. It just says protein so really it doesn't perpetuate that idea at all. That's just what you are interpreting, but I don't see that from that in the facts (i.e. look at the icon). If you don't eat meat as your main source of protein, then put what you do it in it's place.

      June 3, 2011 at 5:28 pm |
      • Chloe

        Americans don't actually eat meat as their "main" protein, they just think they do. They don't realize that protein is in just about everything we eat. If you eat a variety of plant foods and enough calories, you will get about exactly your RDA for protein. If you eat meat and dairy and plant foods, you're probably eating about twice your RDA for protein. Of course government won't tell you that since it's not good for the meat and dairy industry.

        June 3, 2011 at 9:38 pm |
    • Nicole

      I took it to mean protien, as in eggs, beans, quiona, etc are also acceptable. I actually felt the milk category was the only silly one. Calcium is important, but a huge portion of people are lactose intolerant, and really no one needs milk for calcium.

      Personally, I aim for having fruit and vegetables to be more like two thirds of my diet. But then again I tend to think most of the nutrients found in grains are available in fruits and vegetables.

      June 3, 2011 at 5:55 pm |
      • Andrew

        Depends on the grain, some grains like quinoa (Although to be fair this isn't technically a grain, closer related to beats) are fairly hard to beat nutrient wise. It's just most people get most of their grain intake from things like white flower, which is pretty nutrient void.

        June 3, 2011 at 10:54 pm |
    • joerobguy

      Notice also that they got rid of the "meat" category from the old food pyramid and replaced it simply with "protein." I know it's wishful thinking, but maybe this will show more people that meat is pretty unnecessary in a healthy diet. And while I do consume some dairy, I don't think it's "essential." There are many cultures across the planet that do without the milk from another species, to say nothing of curdled milk (cheese).

      June 3, 2011 at 10:47 pm |
  27. The3rdSeal

    And that "personal" touch is the main reason 99.9% of Americans are overweight and fat.

    June 3, 2011 at 4:56 pm |
    • BioHzrd

      Party pooper :(

      June 3, 2011 at 5:21 pm |
  28. Lisa Pellegrino

    Too bad the last one doesn't know how to spell "dessert"

    June 3, 2011 at 4:54 pm |
  29. lala

    No one said water.

    June 3, 2011 at 4:53 pm |
    • BioHzrd

      They said "health repercussions aside"...

      June 3, 2011 at 5:19 pm |
  30. Colin

    Mmmm, sand.

    June 3, 2011 at 4:50 pm |
    • Katie

      Even spell check can't fix stupid.

      June 3, 2011 at 6:45 pm |
  31. good eats

    Okay, I may be married, but I want to meet Kat. If that's her idea of a good plate, she's a kindred soul....

    June 3, 2011 at 4:42 pm |
    • WooHoo

      Pulled Pork is one of the greatest things on earth.....

      June 3, 2011 at 8:04 pm |
  32. UTEP 2 Step

    And this will mean what to the largest consumers of junk food (welfare people)?

    June 3, 2011 at 4:39 pm |
    • Matt

      hahahahah your dumb

      June 3, 2011 at 5:34 pm |
      • Matt

        sorry, you're dumb

        June 3, 2011 at 5:35 pm |
    • jasie

      I can't believe we spent billions for that.

      June 3, 2011 at 6:08 pm |
    • VastlyAmused


      It means that they will still get the short end of the nutrition stick because healthier foods cost more than carbs and starches. You would do better to ask how this affects those who still insist on three Starbucks Mocha Whatever Frappucinos a day, with extra whipped cream and caramel//chocolate swirls every time.

      June 5, 2011 at 11:21 pm |
      • dan

        Do you know what comparison shopping is num nuts? No? Then besides being fat your stupid.

        Take the time to shop properly idiot and eating healthy is no more expensive then eating crap.

        What a dip chit typical num nuts f'n liberal hypocrit.

        June 14, 2011 at 1:07 pm |
  33. Mildred

    Hey, that's mine!

    June 3, 2011 at 4:20 pm |
    • Andrew

      You had my favorite, if for nothing else the white russian. Which I plan to have after dinner tonight. Mmm, white russian. Though the BC spot prawns with drawn butter and garlic and breaded fried orange chicken tonight probably isn't too healthy either.
      I really hope I have some kahlua.

      June 3, 2011 at 10:49 pm |
    • Karen Laszlo

      Actually it is ours – Zisboombah won the Apps for Healthy Kids award from the USDA last year... hmmmm thoughts?

      June 4, 2011 at 12:49 am |
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