The Food Guide Pyramid is an outline of food groups based on US government dietary guidelines. The Food Pyramid is not meant to be use as a strict reference point but to be used as an indicator for specific foods to allow you to plan a diet which suits you personally.
The Food Pyramid was developed by the US Department of Agriculture (USDA), and allows you to see at a glance which foods are healthier than others. It can assist you in choosing from a range of foods so you are eating the recommended nutrients, and also indicates serving sizes to allow you to successfully control the amount of calories, fat, saturated fat, sugar, cholesterol or sodium in your diet.
The USDA recommends eating the fewest servings from the 5 food groups on the pyramid, to provide you with the necessary carbohydrates, minerals, vitamins and protein. The top of the pyramid, where fats, oils and sweets are listed, are to be used sparingly.
Milk, Yogurt, and Cheese
1 cup of milk or yogurt
2 ounces of processed cheese
1 1/2 ounces of natural cheese
Meat, Poultry, Fish, Dry Beans, Eggs, and Nuts
2-3 ounces of cooked lean meat, poultry, or fish
1 egg, or 2 tablespoons of peanut butter count as 1 ounce of lean meat
1/2 cup of cooked dry beans
1 cup of raw leafy vegetables
3/4 cup of vegetable juice
1/2 cup of other vegetables, cooked or chopped raw
1 medium apple, banana, orange
3/4 cup of fruit juice
1/2 cup of chopped, cooked, or canned fruit
Bread, Cereal, Rice, and Pasta
1 slice of bread
1/2 cup of cooked cereal, rice, or pasta
1 ounce of ready-to-eat cereal