There is a set of new dietary guidelines, which
has been recently revised (in 2010), to combat
the mounting problem of obesity.
It has two aims – get people to eat healthier
and get them to practice an active lifestyle.
Basically, we need to make better food choices
in our daily meals.
There are 14 key messages in guidelines
1. Eat a variety of foods, but they must be
within your recommended daily food intake.
2. Maintain your body weight within a healthy
3. Be active physically every day.
4. You should eat an adequate amount of rice,
cereal products (whole grain is preferred) and
5. Eat plenty of fruits and vegetables every
6. Eat moderate amounts of meat, fish,
poultry (chicken, duck), eggs, legumes and nuts.
7. Drink or eat adequate amounts of milk and
8. Limit foods that are high in fats (like
butter and fried foods). Try not to use so much
oils or fats in preparing your food.
9. Don’t use too much salt and sauces in
10. Eat and drink foods and beverages that
are low in sugar.
11. Drink plenty of water every day.
12. When you have a baby, breastfeed the baby
exclusively on breast milk from the day he/she
is born to the age of six months. Thereafter,
continue breastfeeding while introducing other
foods until your child is two years of age.
13. Eat and drink safe foods and beverages.
14. Make effective use of nutrition
information on food labels. (Always look for
kCal per serving/100g etc and find out what went
into making that particular food.)
So what goes into the new food pyramid?
The new food pyramid is divided into four
tiers. Unlike old food pyramids that tell you to
eat as much as you want from the bottommost
tier, this one limits the carbohydrate group
(which consists of rice, noodles, bread, cereals
and tubers) to four to eight servings a day.
The second tier above it contains fruits and
vegetables. You should eat three servings of
vegetables a day and two servings of fruit a
day, at the very least. This is one tier that
you should eat plenty from.
The third tier consists of fish, poultry,
meat and legumes, as well as milk and dairy
products. You should eat half to two servings of
meat, poultry or eggs per day, one serving of
fish per day, and half to one serving of legumes
As for milk and dairy products, just
eat/drink one to three servings a day.
The topmost tier consists of fat, oils, sugar
and salt. Eat very little from this.
What sort of physical activity should I be
There is also a physical activity pyramid. At
the bottommost tier are things you should be
doing every day, such as walking up the stairs
instead of taking an escalator, walking to the
shops instead of taking a car, housework,
Basically, you should be walking as much as
The second tier consists of exercises you
should be doing 30 minutes five to six times a
week, such as brisk walking, playing active
sports, swimming, aerobics etc.
The third tier are activities that increase
your strength, flexibility and muscle endurance,
such as weight lifting, stretching, push ups,
sit ups etc.
The final tier should be limited, and that is
being at your computer or watching TV.