The Food Guide Pyramid does not prescribe a universal diet, but needs to be interpreted differently according to individual needs. Here are two people of very different backgrounds, and a sample menu of what they might consume to stay within the boundaries of the Pyramid. In all cases, the need for snacks should be dictated by blood glucose levels and physical activity:
Daily Requirements for May, an 80-year-old type 2 Asian woman:
About 1,500 total calories; six servings of bread, cereal, rice or pasta; three servings of vegetables; two servings of fruit; two to three servings of dairy; two servings of meat.
- Breakfast: 2/3 cup steamed rice; 6 cashews; 4 oz tofu
- Snack: 3/4 cup canned mandarin orange
- Lunch: 1/2 cup pea soup; 1/2 cup chow mein noodles (1B, 1F); Egg Fu-Yung made with 2 eggs or 1/4 cup egg substitute; 1 ounce lean meat; 1 cup raw bean sprouts & scallions (Small amounts of non-starchy vegetables are considered Free Foods); 1/2 cup steamed mushrooms, 1 tsp. peanut oil; 1 cup 1% milk.
- Dinner: 3 oz lean top round Thai Style Beef with 1 cup noodles; 1 Tbsp. sesame seeds; 1 cup steamed broccoli & pea pods; 1-cup papaya.
- Snack: 1/2 cup sugar-free pudding; made with low-fat milk
Daily requirements for Rick, a 21 year-old Caucasian type 1, active male:
About 2,800 total calories, 11 servings of the bread, cereal, rice, or pasta group, 5 servings of the vegetable group, 4 fruit servings, 2-3 milk group servings, and 3 servings of the meat group for a total of 7 ounces.
*Note: More calories will be required for strenuous activity, for example a 170 pound male burns about 460 calories during one-hour of basketball
Sample Meal Plan:
- Breakfast: 1 cup cooked oatmeal; 3/4 cup blueberries; 1 slice whole-grain toast with 2 tsp. Peanut butter (also is a good source of protein); 1-cup skim or 1% milk.
- Snack: 1-cup non-fat or low-fat yogurt sweetened with aspartame.
- Lunch: 3 ounces grilled chicken on a whole-wheat bun; lettuce and tomato; 1 medium corn on the cob; 1 teasp. mayonnaise; 1 cup low-sodium vegetable juice; 1 cup raw vegetable sticks or side salad with greens, cucumbers, celery, carrots, & 1 Tbsp. non-fat dressing; 1 Banana.
- Dinner: 1 cup skim or 1% milk; 3 ounces broiled salmon (basted in plain, non-fat yogurt); 2/3-cup rice; 1/2 cup black beans; 1/2 cup sweet potato; 1 cup steamed zucchini with garlic and herbs & 1 teasp. olive oil.
- Snack: 1 cup strawberries and 3 cups low fat or no-fat-added popcorn.