Chapter 2

Food Pyramid

 

Every five years, The USDA (United States Department of Agriculture) and DHHS (Department of Health and Human Services) release dietary guidelines that provide nutritional advice to Americans. These guidelines are meant to serve as the basis for the familiar "Food Guide Pyramid" (see figure below) that categorizes foods and suggests the number of servings people should eat from each food group.

The pyramid shape indicates the proportions that various food groups should contribute to daily consumption. For example, food groups at the wide base of the pyramid are to be eaten in greater quantity than food groups that appear toward the narrower top.

                                          

 

As one can see, the “favored” group (the base of the pyramid) is comprised of grains and baked goods (fillers).

 

Over the past two decades, dietary recommendations have emphasized the growing importance of consuming 6 to 11 servings of carbohydrates per day. As greater and greater amounts of high caloric, low nutritional foods (breads, pastas, potatoes, cereals, and rice) have been recommended to be ingested, the instances of obesity, diabetes, cardiac disease, general malaise, and poor heath conditions have increased. Even the most traditional health care providers feel that the current guidelines promote an over-consumption of carbohydrates.

 

Dr. Atkins' original diet, first proposed in the late sixties, called for the elimination of sugar consumption, and carbohydrates were restricted to a maximum of 20 grams per day (a baked potato is approximately 34 grams and a sweet potato is about 44). Needless to say, his recommendations were met with great opposition and criticism. 

(I strongly suggest a review of his publications and official website ( www.atkins.com  )

 

His proposals set the Medical, Educational, and Nutritional establishment “on their ears”, not to mention the social and financial implications involved in suggesting that a diet based on refined carbohydrates and high sugar foods was an imperfect model that contributed to a myriad of catastrophic diseases:

The repercussions involved in turning the “Food Pyramid” upside down are immense; 

Suggesting that a revision of the “Standard American Diet” be made; 

  • recommending that meats, eggs, chicken, seafood, and cheese, with the inclusion of limitless amounts of most vegetables, should be the staples of the American Diet 

rather than following the currently recommended diet of sugars, grains and cereals, is “earth shattering”. 

 

                                                                 

 

Imagine the enormous profits that would be lost if people decreased their consumption of breads, cereals, potatoes, corn, starchy vegetables, sugars, and deserts. 

               (More than half of your grocery store is filled with these empty calorie, low nutritional value foods)

                           Further proof that one can, very easily be, over-weight and undernourished. 

 

 

Back to Table of Contents