Singapore launches `healthy plate` replacing `healthy food pyramid`

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Singapore: Singapore's Health Promotion Board Friday said it has launched a chart named "My Healthy Plate" to replace the well-known food pyramid for a healthy diet.

The new chart features a plate half filled with vegetables and fruit, a quarter filled with brown rice and wholemeal bread, and the other quarter filled with meat and others such as fish and tofu, Xinhua reported.

Surrounding the lower half circle of the healthy plate are words that call for people to choose water, use healthier oils and be active.

The board said the chart was a friendly tool designed to help people remember and practise healthy habits that aid weight control and afford protection from chronic diseases.

"It is developed with the latest science-based recommendations on healthy eating habits and aims to provide an easy-to-understand visual representation of a balanced and healthy diet," it said.

The board said a survey showed that members of the public prefer the plate-shaped chart as easier to understand.

It said it was planning to replace the pyramid chart in public spaces, textbooks and pamphlets with the plate chart by the end of the year.

It has also published detailed explanations of the chart, saying, for instance, that being physically active was an essential part of a healthy lifestyle.

For infants, physical activity should be encouraged from birth, particularly through floor-based play in safe environments, it said.

It also advises children below seven years of age and able to walk on their own to be physically active for at least 180 minutes spread throughout each day in safe environments.

"Children and youths aged seven to 18 years of age should accumulate 60 minutes or more of physical activity everyday," it said. "Adults should aim for 150 minutes of physical activity each week."