Welcome to our Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) page. Here, you'll find questions asked by consumers, health professionals, and people like you, and the answers provided by the nutritionists at the USDA Center for Nutrition Policy and Promotion.

If you can't find an answer to a question you have about nutrition, MyPlate, MyPyramid, the Dietary Guidelines for Americans, or this site's resources, call our Customer Support and Information Line at 1-888-779-7264 (8am to 3pm Eastern time, Monday-Friday, closed Federal holidays). Or, send an email to support@cnpp.usda.gov.

NOTE: Our staff of nutritionists and dietitians can answer basic food and nutrition questions, information about our website, and other related topics. However, they are not IT specialists or medical doctors and therefore cannot answer technical computer glitch questions or offer medical advice.

I.  Food and Diet

How much should we eat from each of the food groups?

There is no one single answer to this question, but by using the Daily Food Plan, you can find an answer that is personalized for you. The Plan takes into account your age, sex, height, weight, and how much physical activity you usually do. From the MyPlate home page, click on the SuperTracker & Other Tools tab on the top navigation bar. When the drop-down menu appears, select the second option -- Daily Food Plans. Follow through, and you will get a Daily Food Plan personlized for you. It is important to remember that the MyPlate image itself is an icon and it does not show specific amounts. The Plan provides those amounts.

In general, the USDA Food Patterns provide recommended intake from each food group at various calorie levels. For the 2000 calorie level, recommended intakes include: 2 cups fruit, 2.5 cups vegetables, 6 oz grains, 5.5 oz protein foods, and 3 cups dairy. For more information on the USDA Food Patterns please see Appendix 7 in the 2010 Dietary Guidelines for Americans.

How much fiber should I be eating?

The recommended dietary fiber intake is 14 grams per 1,000 calories consumed. For example, for a 2000 calorie pattern, the fiber recommendation is 28 grams per day. This is based on the recommendations set forth by the 2010 Dietary Guidelines for Americans. You can find the amount of fiber in a food on the Nutrition Facts label of a product.

Some of the best sources of fiber include: beans and peas, vegetables, fruits, whole grains, and nuts. To see a list of sources and amounts of dietary fiber in certain foods, see the 2010 Dietary Guidelines for Americans, Appendix 13.

How do I count how much grain, fruit, and dairy I eat?

All food group recommendations for the USDA Food Patterns — the basis for the Daily Food Plans — are made in household units (cups for fruits, vegetables, and dairy and ounce equivalents for grains and protein foods). To find out more about foods in the food groups, how much is needed, and what counts as an ounce or cup equivalent, click on Food Groups in the left column of the MyPlate home page. Then, click on the individual food groups.

The USDA Food Patterns list the number of cups or ounce equivalents for each food group for each specific calorie level. Remember, your Daily Food Plan takes into account your age, sex, height, weight, and physical activity level to determine your recommendations from each food group.

When and why did the peanut butter equivalent in the Protein Foods Group change from 2 tablespoons to 1 tablespoon?

Equivalencies for food in the Protein Foods Group are based on a combination of protein and calories. USDA changed the equivalencies for nuts, peanut butter, and beans and peas in 2005 because the calorie levels of the original equivalents were too high to promote them as valid choices in the Protein Foods Group. While the protein in 1 oz. equivalent of peanut butter is now less than in 1 oz. of meat, the recommended daily amounts (about 5 to 7 oz. equivalents) still provide more than adequate protein for all age groups, if the food pattern recommendations are followed completely.

Why are the cup equivalents for cottage cheese higher than other dairy products?

The Dairy Group equivalents in the USDA Food Patterns are not based on calories — they are based on the amount of calcium in the food. Since cottage cheese is lower per cup in calcium relative to milk, it takes more of it to provide the same amount of calcium. Two cups of cottage cheese provide the same amount of calcium as 1 cup of milk or 1.5 ounces of hard, natural cheeses. Consuming 1/2 cup of cottage cheese "counts" as 1/4 cup from the Dairy Group.

II.  MyPlate Questions

What was the reasoning for developing the new MyPlate symbol?

MyPlate was developed as an effort to promote healthy eating to consumers. The MyPlate icon is easy to understand and it helps to promote messages based on the 2010 Dietary Guidelines for Americans. The new MyPlate icon builds on a familiar image — a plate — and is accompanied by messages to encourage consumers to make healthy choices.

Where are the oils on the MyPlate icon?

To simplify the image, the MyPlate icon includes only the five food groups, to help consumers prioritize their choices. Oils are typically a component in food and usually not a separate item on the plate. The emphasis on the food groups helps consumers think about their entire meal instead of just components or ingredients. For more information on oils, click here.

What happened to discretionary calories? How do I count cookies, cakes, pies, etc?

To simplify the image, the MyPlate icon includes only the five food groups to help remind consumers to eat healthfully. The icon does not include all of the messages of the Dietary Guidelines. Sweets or desserts can be included in a healthy diet as long as food group recommendations are met and overall calorie needs are not exceeded. The 2010 Dietary Guidelines replaced the "discretionary calories allowance" with a limit on calories from solid fats and added sugars (SoFAS). These are now called "empty calories" in many consumer materials. Click here for more information on empty calories.

Physical Activity is not illustrated on the MyPlate icon. What is the rationale for the change?

To simplify the image, the MyPlate icon includes only the five food groups to help remind consumers to eat healthfully. It does not include all of the messages of the Dietary Guidelines. Although not depicted in this icon, physical activity is still very important for an overall healthy lifestyle.

Who is the author of the ChooseMyPlate.gov material?

Everything on the ChooseMyPlate.gov website, Daily Food Plan, Food Tracker, Food Planner, etc., was developed by a team of nutritionists, dietitians, economists, and policy experts at USDA. The information is based on expert nutrition recommendations for Americans two years and older from the Dietary Guidelines for Americans.

How do I reference a page from ChooseMyPlate.gov?

If you are referencing a particular page from ChooseMyPlate.gov for a school paper or a research article, you can use the general format below. Journal articles, however, will require slightly different formatting and style, so see the guidelines published by that journal. The basic reference would be:

U.S. Department of Agriculture. ChooseMyPlate.gov Website. Washington, DC. Title of Publication. www.WebAddress.gov. Accessed [Insert date accessed with year].

For example:

U.S. Department of Agriculture. ChooseMyPlate.gov Website. Washington, DC. Vegetarian Diets. www.choosemyplate.gov/
Accessed June 2, 2011.

III. Classifying Foods

How were the food groups decided for ChooseMyPlate.gov and the USDA Food Patterns?

This history of these food groups dates back to the early 1980s. The nutritionists who created these patterns provided the following philosophical rationale for how they chose to group foods:

"The new food guide must be useful to the target audience. It should build on previous food guides. Therefore, food groups should be used as a conceptual framework and these food groups must be recognizable to consumers. Scientists might prefer a grouping system based strictly on nutrients or some other technical characteristic of the food; however, if such grouping systems are not easily recognizable to consumers, they are not useful. For example, tomatoes are botanically a fruit, but consumers use them and think of them as vegetables; therefore, they should be grouped with vegetables. If past food guides have traditionally grouped certain foods together, consumers should not be asked to unlearn this information unless there is a clear advantage to reorganization... In summary, to be useful to consumers, food grouping should be based on the nutrient content of the foods, the way the food is used by consumers, and the way it has been grouped in the past."

The names of these food groups have been modified over time but the groups still represent this original philosophy. The entire report from which this excerpt was taken is available online by clicking here.

Why have the names of the food groups changed?

Many consumers and professionals felt the names of certain groups such as the "Milk Group" and "Meat and Beans Group" were too limiting. In order to more clearly indicate the range of foods included in each group, the official group names were changed from "Milk Group" to "Dairy Group" and "Meat and Beans Group" to "Protein Foods Group" with the release of the 2010 Dietary Guidelines. These titles recognize the greater variety of foods with similar nutrient content that are included in each group.

Why do ChooseMyPlate.gov and the USDA Food Patterns include tomatoes and avocados in the Vegetable Group instead of the Fruit Group?

Oh yes, tomatoes and avocados are fruits — botanically speaking. But so are eggplants, cucumbers, green peppers, and several other fruits that you'd hardly expect. The botanical definition of a fruit has to do with its seeds. USDA classifies botanical fruits that are sweet and/or tart as fruits for nutritional purposes. USDA groups foods according to their nutritional value, how they are used in meals, and how they taste rather than their botanical definitions. Tomatoes are eaten as vegetables (as parts of salads, sandwiches, sauces), so they are in the Vegetable Group. The same goes for peppers, eggplants, etc. For more on the tomato, click here.

Is corn a grain or a vegetable?

Botanical definitions may differ from the traditional use of the food. The USDA Food Patterns categorize foods based on tradition, nutritional value, and use at meals. The maturity level of corn at harvest may affect the use at meals and the nutritional value. For these reasons fresh corn is considered a starchy vegetable and (milled) dried corn (e.g., cornmeal, tortillas) is considered a grain.

What is a whole grain? How much fiber is in whole grains versus non-whole grains?

Whole grains consist of the entire grain seed, usually called the kernel. The kernel is made of three components — the bran, germ, and endosperm. If the kernel has been cracked, crushed, or flaked, then it must retain nearly the same relative proportions of bran, germ, and endosperm as the original grain to be called "whole grain." There is not a general ratio of fiber in whole grains. The amount of fiber varies depending on the type of whole grain. For example, 100 grams of whole wheat flour contains 12.2 grams of fiber, while an equal amount of brown rice flour contains 4.6 grams of fiber. The 2010 Dietary Guidelines for Americans discusses the benefits and emphasizes the importance of consuming both whole grains and dietary fiber. To identify whole grains, look at the ingredient list, not the front of the package. For example, "Whole wheat flour" or "100% whole wheat flour" should be the first ingredient listed.

How do I classify certain vegetables?

There are 5 vegetable subgroup categories: starchy vegetables, dark green vegetables, red & orange vegetables, beans and peas, and other vegetables. For more information and to see a list of the vegetables in each category, click here.

Why are beans in both the Protein Foods Group and the Vegetable Group?

Beans and peas can be counted in either the Vegetable Group (beans and peas subgroup) or in the Protein Foods Group. This is because beans and peas contain nutrients similar to foods in both groups. Beans and peas are excellent sources of plant protein, and also provide other nutrients such as iron and zinc, making them similar to meats, poultry, and fish found in the protein foods group. However, they are also considered part of the vegetable subgroup because they are excellent sources of dietary fiber and nutrients such as folate and potassium. Generally, individuals who regularly eat meat, poultry, and fish would count beans and peas in the Vegetable Group. Individuals who seldom or never eat meat, poultry, or fish (vegetarians and vegans) would first count the beans and peas they eat in the Protein Foods Group, and then any remaining would be counted in the Vegetable Group. For information on beans, click here.

Why are green peas and green (string) beans not in the Beans and Peas Vegetable Subgroup?

The beans and peas vegetable subgroup contains beans and peas that are the mature forms of legumes. That is, they are harvested when the seeds are fully developed and dry. Green peas are harvested before they are fully mature. They are similar to other starchy vegetables and are grouped with them. Note that split peas are the mature form of green peas. Green (string) beans are also harvested before they are mature. They are grouped with other vegetables like lettuce, celery, and cabbage because their nutrient content is similar to those foods. Examples of foods in the beans and peas vegetable subgroup are black-eyed peas, split peas, kidney beans, pinto beans, black beans, garbanzo beans (chick peas), lima beans, and lentils.

In what food group are soymilk (soy beverage) and other soy products?

Fortified soymilk (soy beverage) is now officially in the Dairy Group as it provides a similar nutrition profile — particularly calcium, vitamin D, vitamin A, potassium, and protein — as cow's milk.

Other soy products (tofu, tempeh, etc.) are included in the Protein Foods Group. They are made from soy beans, but have been processed and are more similar to other protein foods than to whole soybeans. Soy products are generally consumed as a protein source rather than as a vegetable.

IV.  Dietary Restrictions

What is the difference between a food allergy and food intolerance?

For someone with a food allergy, proteins in certain foods trigger an abnormal immune response. Common food allergies include those to milk, eggs, fish, crustacean shellfish, tree nuts, wheat, peanuts, and soybeans. In comparison, food intolerances are due to the inability of the body to digest or metabolize a food component. For example, lactose intolerance is caused by a deficiency of the enzyme lactase that breaks down the sugar lactose in milk and milk products. Because food allergies and food intolerances can cause some of the same symptoms (stomach cramps, vomiting, and diarrhea) they are often mistaken for one another. Those who think they may have a food allergy or a food intolerance should be medically evaluated to avoid unnecessarily eliminating foods from their diet. Most people who have a food allergy need to completely eliminate the offending food and ingredients that contain the food's protein from their diet. However, for some food intolerances, like lactose intolerance, smaller portions (e.g., 4 ounces of milk) or a modified version of the offending food (e.g., lactose-reduced or lactose-free milk, yogurt, or cheese) may be well tolerated. More information about food allergies and intolerances can be found here.

What advice do you have for people who can't or don't drink milk?

For those who are lactose intolerant or sensitive to lactose, lower-lactose products are available. Hard cheeses and yogurt generally contain less lactose than milk and may be more easily tolerated. Some people may also try smaller portions of lactose-containing products (e.g., 4 ounces of milk) and/or combining the product with another food (e.g., having milk with cereal). Lactose-free milk is also widely available. Fortified soymilk (soy beverage), which has a similar nutrient profile to cow's milk, is another option within the Dairy Group.

There are a number of calcium-rich, non-dairy foods for those who do not consume milk products for whatever reason (allergies, veganism, etc.). These foods include some green vegetables (collard greens, turnip greens, beet greens), white beans, canned fish (sardines and salmon with bones), and some soy products. However, consuming enough of these foods on a regular basis to meet calcium needs may be difficult for many. Calcium-fortified products such as juices, cereals, breads, almond drink, and rice drink can also be good sources of calcium. For more information on calcium sources, please see Appendix 14 of the 2010 Dietary Guidelines for Americans.

Can vegetarians use the USDA Food Patterns?

The USDA Food Patters are applicable to vegetarians and vegetarian diets can meet all the recommendations for nutrients. The key is to consume a variety of foods and the right amount of foods to meet your calorie needs. Follow the food group recommendations for your age, sex, and activity level to get the right amount of food and the variety of foods needed for nutrient adequacy. Nutrients that vegetarians may need to focus on include protein, iron, calcium, zinc, and vitamin B12. A number of plant-based protein sources are available in the Protein Foods Group. These include beans and peas, nuts, nut butters, seeds, and soy products. With the addition of fortified soymilk (soy beverage) to the Dairy Group, all the food groups have vegan and vegetarian options. A Lacto-ovo Vegetarian Adaptation and a Vegan Adaptation of the USDA Food Patterns can be found in Appendix 8 and 9 of the 2010 Dietary Guidelines for Americans.

How do I lose weight using tools on ChooseMyPlate.gov?

If your weight is above the healthy range, the interactive tools on ChooseMyPlate.gov offer an option to "move toward a healthier weight." If you select this option, your Daily Food Plan will be calculated based on calories needed to move you toward a healthier weight. This is usually 200 to 400 calories less than the amount needed to maintain your current weight. For more tips to help you lose weight, see the website section called Steps to a Healthier Weight.

If you need to lose a large amount of weight, you should consult a registered dietitian (RD) for a personalized health assessment and advice. You can find a dietitian through the American Dietetic Association's website.

If I have diabetes, celiac sprue (gluten intolerance), food allergies, gastric bypass surgery, etc., how can I modify the USDA Food Patterns to fit my specific needs?

The USDA Food Patterns, based on The 2010 Dietary Guidelines for Americans, are applicable to healthy people over the age of two years. They do not take into account diseases or disorders that require therapeutic diets. For more information on a specific condition or therapeutic diet, please visit our Related Links page for government websites such as the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute (NHLBI) and the National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases (NIDDK).

We also advise you to ask your doctor or health professional to refer you to a registered dietitian. You can also find a dietitian through the American Dietetic Association's website.

V.  Drinks/ Beverages

Why is water not included on the MyPlate icon?

The MyPlate icon and the USDA Food Patterns are based on the recommendations of the Dietary Guidelines for Americans. The Guidelines recommendations for water intake do not include a specific recommendation for the quantity to drink. The Guidelines state that "healthy individuals, in general, have an adequate total water intake to meet their needs when they have regular access to drinking water and other beverages. The combination of thirst and typical behaviors, such as drinking beverages with meals, provides sufficient total water intake. Contrary to popular belief, there is no official scientifically-based recommendation to "drink 8 glasses of water per day."

What information does the ChooseMyPlate.gov website provide regarding drinking water instead of sugary drinks?

The information on ChooseMyPlate.gov is based on the recommendations of the Dietary Guidelines for Americans. The Guidelines emphasize limiting empty calories (calories from solid fats and added sugars). Added sugars from soda, energy drinks, and sports drinks make up more than a third of the added sugars Americans consume. Reducing the consumption of sugary drinks, and therefore added sugars, will lower the calorie content of the diet, without compromising its nutrient adequacy. One consumer message from the Dietary Guidelines brochure states "Choose water instead of sugary drinks. There are about 10 packets of sugar in a 12-ounce can of soda."

How do you classify fruit juice and fruit drinks?

100% fruit juice is considered to be part of the Fruit Group. However, 100% fruit juice lacks fiber provided from whole fruit. Fruit drinks that are not 100% fruit juice contain added sugars and only the amount of the drink that is 100% fruit juice would be counted towards the fruit group. For example, if an 8 fluid ounce (1 cup) fruit drink is "10% fruit juice," then the drink would contain 0.1 cups of fruit. The added sugars in the drink would be classified as empty calories.

VI.  Specific Audiences

Are the USDA Food Patterns applicable for women who are pregnant or lactating?

When you are pregnant or breastfeeding, you have special nutritional needs. USDA has included a special section on the website for Pregnancy and Breastfeeding. Here, you can find your own Daily Food Plan for Moms, along with specific information for moms and links to the government's best advice to help you and your baby stay healthy. Remember every pregnant women needs to visit a health care provider regularly. The Dietary Guidelines includes specific guidance for gestational weight gain, alcohol consumption, seafood consumption, and folic acid and iron supplementation.

At this time, we also do not have any recommendations for women pregnant with twins or other multiples. We also do not have recommendations for those women who are both pregnant and breastfeeding. We recommend you consult with your health care provider to make sure that you are meeting your nutrient and energy needs, as well as the needs of your babies. You may wish to print out Daily Food Plans for Moms for pregnancy and/or breastfeeding and share these with your doctor. He or she will advise you if the plan is sufficient, based on your health and rate of weight gain. Also, please remember to keep checking with your health care provider to be sure you and your babies remain healthy.

The sections on our Pregnancy and Breastfeeding pages of the website will be updated in the fall of 2011.

Can children use the USDA Food Patterns?

The 2010 Dietary Guidelines and the USDA Food Patterns are directed towards healthy people over the age of two years old. Additional sections on our website for Kids and Preschoolers will be updated in the fall of 2011.

Why does MiPlato (the Spanish-language version of MyPlate) use the word "vegetales" for "vegetables" rather than "verduras"?
In discussions with Spanish speakers, our translation team realized that many of them use both “vegetales” and “verduras" interchangeably in informal, colloquial speech. However, most people did also recognize the difference between the two. “Verduras” comes from the word “verde” ("green") and refers to green leafy vegetables only. We therefore decided to use “vegetales," a term that groups all types of vegetables (green leafy vegetables, legumes and tubers), not only because it is universally understood, but also because it is the official definition by the Real Academia of the Spanish language. [Diccionario de la Lengua Española. Real Academia Española (Colombia, Ecuador, Mexico, El Salvador, Venezuela, Chile, Perú, Guatemala, Costa Rica, Filipinas, Panamá, Cuba, Paraguay, Bolivia, República Dominicana, Nicaragua, Argentina, Uruguay, Honduras, Puerto Rico y Norteamérica) Vigésima Segunda Edición 2001]

VII.  Food Safety

Where can I find information about food safety?

a. For general food safety advice on the ChooseMyPlate.gov website: Food Safety Advice for Everyone

b. For specific questions or more detailed information: The USDA Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS)

c. For specific information for food safety for pregnancy or breastfeeding on Choose MyPlate.gov website: Food Safety for Pregnant and Breastfeeding Women

Should I wash meat before I cook it? What about fruits and vegetables?

Raw meat and poultry should not be washed or rinsed because this creates the danger of cross-contamination and is not necessary. Washing these foods can allow most bacteria that are present on the surface of the meat or poultry to spread to ready-to-eat foods, kitchen utensils, and counter surfaces.

Fruits and vegetables, on the other hand, should be rinsed under cold water to remove any residual dirt. Firm produce, such as apples and potatoes, should be scrubbed with a brush. Even if you plan to peel or cut the produce before eating, it is still important to thoroughly rinse it first to prevent microbes from transferring from the outside to the inside.

Fore more information on this issue, see the USDA Food Safety and Inspection Service's (FSIS) Washing Food: Does It Promote Food Safety? And for more information on food safety in general, visit the FSIS website and Foodsafety.gov.

VIII.  Food Tracker Information

Is the information in the Food Tracker going to be updated?

Yes, a totally new Tracker application is being designed and will be released in the fall of 2011. The new Food Tracker will represent the information and advice from the 2010 Dietary Guidelines and the current USDA Food Patterns.

I am trying to track our whole families' eating habits. However, after I log in, I only get the primary user profile. How do I switch family members?

Food Tracker (formerly called MyPyramid Tracker) is set up for an individual assessment. You would need to set up a separate account for each family member in order to receive assessment results for each individual family member.

I searched everywhere on the Food Tracker (formerly called MyPyramid Tracker) site, but could not find instructions on how to change my password. Could you please send me instructions for this?

We do not have a "change your password" option. If you want to use a different password you will need to create a new account.

I have my password but I am not sure if I misspelled it. Can you please send it to me?

We don't have access to personal information such as passwords and user IDs. When you first registered if you gave your email address and a password hint, there is place on the log in page to get the password sent to you. If you did not set this up when you created your account you will have to create a new account.

I accidentally registered for this website. How do I cancel it?

We don't have access to personal information such as passwords and user IDs. Thus, we are unable to delete any accounts. If your account remains unused for one year it will be automatically deleted.

How do I enter nutritional supplements on the Food Tracker?

The Food Tracker (formerly called MyPyramid Tracker) currently does not have the option to add dietary supplements to your intake. You can find a Dietary Supplements Information Page from the Save and Analyze page of the Food Tracker. It should be the 4th block down the list.

Can I view individual food items using the Food Tracker?

Currently, the Food Tracker does not have the feature to assess individual foods from the food list. You will have to enter each food individually then click save and analyze. We understand this is somewhat inconvenient and not easy to do, but for now it is the only way to see a single food's analysis. You may also search the nutrient content of foods from USDA's Agriculture Research Service's (ARS) Nutrient Data Laboratory (NDL). This is the database we use for the food in the Tracker. Click here to check out the NDL search tool.

Is it possible to enter foods that are not listed and then to manually enter the nutrient amounts?

At the present time the Food Tracker does not have the capability to allow users to enter foods not available in the program's database, even if the nutrient profile is known. The foods in the Tracker are from a national database of over 8,000 foods. This database is updated periodically but does not contain all foods available.

I entered food for 6-8-08 twice. How do I delete it so that my graphs will be accurate?

Unfortunately there isn't a way to delete a day already entered. Since it will affect your average, the best recommendation we have is to use a future day's intake and use it for the date you already entered. You can delete the foods for the day you don't want to use and enter in foods from a future date. To go back to the date you initially entered and view, edit or delete foods from that day, log in and proceed to the profile/date page. Here you will have to manually change the date to the date you want to view. The program will default to the current date. Please note the program is digit sensitive so if you want to view foods entered on a previous day, you will have to enter the date the way you entered them the first time. For instance the program views 1/01/2008 as a different date than 1/1/2008.

How do I retrieve past data that I entered?

To view, edit, or add foods entered on a previous day, log in and proceed to the profile/date page. Here you will have to manually change the date to the date you want to view. The program will default to the current date. Please note the program is digit sensitive so if you want to view foods entered on a previous day, you will have to enter the date the way you entered them the first time. For instance the program views 1/01/2008 as a different date than 1/1/2008.

I accidentally clicked on "condensed option" for physical activity and cannot "undo" this. How do I undo it for the day?

Once you have selected one option for the day, you would not be able to change it. However, when you enter a different date you can choose a different option.

I would like to know how to get the graph which shows how much you need and how much you ate. Where is it located?

The graphs are located on the Save and Analyze page. After you have entered food and their amounts click on Save and Analyze then choose the Healthy Eating History block. You can click on the nutrient or food group you desire and the graph for the item will be shown.

IX.  Resources & Materials

Whom should I contact for additional advice on nutrition?

For additional nutrition information, you can visit Nutrition.gov, HealthFinder.gov or the American Dietetic Association. To find a dietitian, go to the ADA's homepage and enter your zip code. You will get a list of registered dietitians in your area.

What are the rules for reprinting MyPlate materials?

Copyright, Restrictions, and Permissions Notice:
Permission to Reprint: All of the informational materials produced by the USDA Center for Nutrition Policy and Promotion, whether printed or maintained electronically on this website, are in the public domain and as such are not restricted by copyright law unless otherwise stated.

We ask only that informational materials, both graphic and text, provided by CNPP be reproduced as originally designed and/or written and that they not be altered or edited in any way. For accuracy and continuity of the message, we encourage all users to reproduce the information as original designed and/or written. If, however, the user finds it necessary to modify the graphic image or text, do not attribute to either the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA), the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), or the USDA Center for Nutrition Policy and Promotion.

For book, magazine, newspaper, or Internet publishers, this statement will serve as the official statement of the Center for Nutrition Policy and Promotion. Click here for more information on the graphic standards for the MyPlate icon.

What materials do you have in Spanish?

The MyPlate materials that are available in Spanish are located on our En Español page.

What printed materials do you have available and how can I get them?

All of our print materials can be found on our Print Materials page.

How and where can I obtain MyPlate Graphic Files?

a. Download from our Graphics page (jpeg, pdf, tiff)

b. Contact CNPP Visual Information Specialist for high resolution (.eps and .ai) format

c. Single CD is available with all formats (multipliers, not individuals at this time)

How do you recommend I teach a whole class of children to use MyPlate?

It is important to remember that MyPlate is an icon and works best with other teaching tools. The best way to teach the class is to download some of the information from the ChooseMyPlate website and use that. MyPlate is brand new, so more educational materials are in the works. Check back frequently or contact us.

One easy thing to do with a classroom is to create individual Daily Food Plans. You'll probably have a few different plans to work with, but this should make the students more enthusiastic because the results are individualized. Creating individual Daily Food Plans will also give the teacher the opportunity to find out about the students' daily physical activity. If they answer that they're sedentary, that would be a good opportunity for some healthful interventions! Good luck!

Are there any sample menus or recipes available that illustrate the USDA Food Patterns calorie plans?

Current with the 2010 Dietary Guidelines for Americans, the USDA provides sample menus for the 2000 calorie level. These menus give an example of how all of the recommendations for food groups and nutrient intake can be integrated into a weekly menu.

ChooseMyPlate.gov does not have the resources to develop and test recipes. We hope to work with partners in the future to make more recipes available.

Does MyPlate have a Twitter page?

We sure do! Sign up for our daily tips and news.