The (Fascinating) Evolution Of The Australian Healthy Eating Pyramid
Summer is upon those in the southern hemisphere. If you haven't been working hard to trim that waist line, it's probably a little too late. However, never fear for 2018 is near, and with the new year comes the annual opportunity to make a change to your lifestyle and pant size, and overhaul your health.
As for how, well, the internet and social networks are awash with ideas: green juices to keep cancer at bay, poke bowls, buddha bowls, fad diets to lose 2 stones in 2 weeks; these solutions dispensed by bankers-turned nutritionists or impossibly bronzed millennials. Paleo, Keto, Plant Protein, Low-Carb , Vegan, Sugar Free. Who knew there were multiple roads to cleansed arteries and glowing skin; One littered with meat and not a potato in sight. The other verdant with vegetables, seaweed and avocado.
Faced with a tsunami of options, each one purportedly easier than the other, promising eternal youth and a return to our pre-pot-bellied days, we become frozen in indecision and turn to a steady, dependable resource - Nutrition Australia. Nothing says stability and credibility like their food pyramid. It's real, it's recognisable and hell, it's a diet one could probably adhere to for more than 3 weeks.
In the process of consulting the Healthy Eating Pyramid, we noticed a few fascinating changes over the years, starting from 1999. The latest iteration was released in 2015. Below, we list some of the small but meaningful differences.
Pyramid 1999: Equal weight given to fruit/veg and grains. Salt was bad, water was good. Moderate consumption of lean protein and dairy. A sign of the times - "reduced fat" was ok, and so were some margarine and sugar. Chicken skin was a no-no!
Pyramid 2004: Similar to the previous version with the addeed mention of "Move More". ie Combine healthy diet with exercise.
Pyramid 2007: Almost identical to 2007, so mostly cosmetic changes.
Pyramid 2015: A big shift in paradigm, not to mention prettier graphics. Vegetables and legumes rule, fruit is given a small portion of the pyramid base. Grains move up to the second tier, with an emphasis on "wholegrains". Someone really loves legumes, as it gets another mention alongside proteins and dairy. Interestingly, good fats are encouraged in small amounts, and SUGAR is now discouraged. Most exciting of all - Enjoy herbs and spices! We couldn't agree more. :)