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Food Guide Pyramid

 See also:-    Food and Health  |   5-A-day Vegetables 5-A-day Fruit  | Calories  |Carbohydrates  Dietary Fibre  |  Minerals  |  Vitamins  

The Food Pyramid is an excellent aid to help you choose from a  variety of foods  which supply the recommended amounts of daily nutrients you need including vitamins, minerals, protein, carbohydrates and fat.

It has been designed to show you at a glance, which types of food you should have the most (and the least )of in a well balanced, healthy diet - the least at the top - and is also useful as an tool when dieting.  Below the pyramid are examples of how much the various serving sizes consist of.


Bread, Cereal, Grain and Pasta

At the bottom of the food pyramid are foods which provide complex carbohydrates which are an important source of energy. Try to eat at least some whole-grain breads, cereals or pastas, as these are less processed and therefore retain more vitamins, minerals and fibre.

Daily Servings : 6 to 10

Serving examples:
1 slice of bread (from a medium loaf)

1 tortilla bread
100g/4oz/ cup rice

100g/4oz/ cup  cooked cereal

100g/4oz/ cup pasta
25g/1oz/1 cup ready-to-eat cereal (e.g. Cornflakes)


Fruit and Vegetables

These form the next tier up in the pyramid and are foods which provide vitamins and minerals as well as fibre. Try to choose a variety of different coloured fruit and vegetables as the different colours often indicates the presence of different nutrients.

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Daily Servings : Combined total 5-10

Serving examples:

In general - 1 large handful
Click here for a complete list of Vegetable serving sizes
Click here for a complete list of Fruit serving sizes


These form the third tier up in the pyramid and are foods which provide protein, iron and zinc and in the case of dairy products, calcium, all of which is essential for the maintenance and growth of healthy bone and muscle.

Daily Servings : Combined total 4-6

Serving examples:

50-75g/2-3oz cooked meat, fish or poultry
1 Egg
25g/1oz/ /3 cup cooked dried beans

25g/1oz/ /3 cup cooked lentils


Fats, Oils and Sugars

These form the tip of the pyramid which, as the  smallest part, serves to show that little is required in your daily diet. Although the body does require a certain amount of fat,  most of us get a fair proportion from foods such as meat, poultry and dairy products and in ready made foods so extra fats and oils eaten sparingly will suffice.



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