How Much Do I Need To Eat?
The amount of food from each food group
that each person needs to eat to maintain a healthy lifestyle is dependent on their age, sex and physical activity level. One size doesn’t fit all. Here is an example of a food guide for a 2,000 calorie diet.
What counts as a cup or ounce?
In general, 1 slice of bread, 1 cup of ready-to-eat cereal, or ½ cup of
cooked rice, cooked pasta, or cooked cereal can be considered as 1 ounce
In general, 1 cup of raw or cooked vegetables or vegetable juice, or 2 cups of
raw leafy greens (such as spinach and lettuce) can be considered as 1 cup from
the vegetable group.
For the fruit group, 1 cup of fruit or 100% fruit juice, or ½ cup of dried fruit can
be considered 1 cup.
In general, 1 cup of milk or yogurt, 1 ½ ounces of natural cheese, or 2 ounces
of processed cheese can be considered as 1 cup from the milk group.
Focus on making low-fat or fat-free choices most of the
For protein, 1 ounce of
lean meat, poultry or fish, ¼ cup cooked dry beans, 1 egg,
1 tablespoon of peanut butter, or ½ ounce of nuts or seeds can be considered
as 1 ounce equivalent from the meat and beans group.
Want to know the amount of each food group you and your family need daily? Go to http://www.mypyramid.gov/mypyramid/index.aspx and enter your age, sex and physical activity level to receive a quick customized food guide.
For a detailed assessment of your food intake and physical activity level, click on MyPyramid Tracker at http://www.mypyramidtracker.gov/.