Rethinking the Food Pyramid

In the US and Canada, the Food Pyramid and the Food Guide are quite similar. They each recommend the basis of the diet be made up of grains, followed by fruits and vegetables, then dairy, then meats, and finally, fats. Whatever country you live in, there is probably some reiteration of this guideline for “healthful” eating.

Yes, I know in the US, we changed to a plate (My Plate), but for the sake of argument, let’s play with pyramids, shall we?

With more and more diagnoses of digestive disease, and folks going Paleo and gluten-free, the Food Guide (and the old Pyramid and even the new My Plate) is quickly becoming a relic of old nutritional information.

If we were to do a new version of the food pyramid—one that would be approved by our Paleolithic ancestors—it would look something like this:

• The first layer would be organic plants. Vegetables, especially dark leafy greens and cruciferous, sulfur-containing vegetables, should be what you’re putting in your mouth more often than anything else. Dr. Terry Wahls, who healed herself of progressive MS by following a Paleo diet, suggests that for optimal health we eat no less than 3 cups per day of sulfur-rich vegetables, 3 cups per day of green vegetables, and 3 cups per day of brightly colored vegetables.
• Good, locally sourced pastured meats, wild fish, and organic fowl would make up the next layer. Ideally, you will get your meats, etc. from local sources and they would be organic and grass-fed wherever possible.
• The next layer on our food pyramid would be for fruits, especially dark-colored berries and non-starchy fruits like melons and grapes.
• After that, we would have a layer featuring good healthy fats like avocado, olive oil, and nuts.
• And on the very tippy top of our food pyramid would be spices.

This is solid nutrition. No sugar, nothing processed. Super simple.

PS–If you’ve been thinking of following a Paleo lifestyle, consider subscribing to Dinner Answers – we have a weekly Paleo menu available!

5 Responses

  1. Love it. You might expand this for readers by defining what brightly colored veggies are or make an actual pyramid to add to the article.

  2. Agreed! Please list plenty of examples for each layer and veggie type (sulfur-rich, bright colored, dark green). Thanks!!

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