MyPlate, the Michelle Obama driven replacement for the food pyramid
Michelle Obama revised the old US food pyramid. It’s now a circle. Just kidding, her work is actually much better. The old one built a foundation of obesity on grains, piled meat and milk on top of it and then left fruits and vegetables as, like, condiments. This was not a healthy diet. The new color-coded MyPlate offers a better balance, though I think American meat consumption and waste is still bad for the planet.
What I’ve done here is compare her food chart to actual food supply in the US, China and India (latest FAO data, 2007). It’s interesting.
America’s Plate, For Reals
Here you can see what the American food supply is like, according to 2007 FAO data. There’s more recent data, but this is the most robust (and easy to work with).
As you can see from America’s plate, the equal shares of grain/meat/fruit/veg is feasible, but they’re consuming way more than a glass of dairy to the side. I can’t figure out the MyPlate scale, but it looks like they should be consuming half as much milk as grain. The food supply shows the opposite. Americans are consuming almost 2x as much milk as grain.
China’s Plate For Reals
The US still consumes the most food resources in the world, but China is getting close. Their food consumption is drastically different. I was surprised to see that they have a ton of vegetables in the food supply. I always thought the Chinese were more carnivores.
India’s Plate For Reals
Indians, somewhat predictably, is eating a lot of grain (rice I assume), drinking a lot of milk and eating very little meat, though that number is rising.