Adults who are inactive or sedentary should eat the minimum suggested servings.
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The Malaysia’s Nutrition Department, which is part of the Health Ministry (KKM), has released an updated food pyramid and there’s a major change in the order of carbohydrates, and fruit and vegetables.
Some of you might recall that older food pyramids suggested eating more carbohydrates than fruits and vegetables, placing bread and rice at the bottom of the pyramid.
This is no longer the case as, working our way up, the new pyramid advocates eating two servings of fruit and more than 3 servings of vegetables per day, and only 3 to 5 servings of carbohydrates.
Continuing to climb the pyramid, we see that people should eat 1 serving of fish, 1 or 2 servings or chicken, eggs and meat, 1 serving of legums and 2 servings of dairy.
At the top of the pyramid, the smallest point, the Nutrition Department suggests limiting intakes of fat, oil, sugar and salt.
Additionally, it adds that people should drink 6 to 8 glasses of water a day, assuming one glass is 250ml, which means we should be drinking between 1.5 litres to 2 litres per day.
It also states that adults who are inactive or live sedentary lives should consume the minimum suggested servings.
In a statement accompanying the new pyramid, Health Minister Datuk Seri Dr Adham Baba said that this updated guideline (Panduan Diet Malaysia 2020) is for adults aged 18 to 59 years old.
He encouraged people to increase their intake of vegetables and fruit as this is an important contributor in raising the body’s immune system.
Piramid Makanan Malaysia 2020 pic.twitter.com/zxHWnS2jRS— Bahagian Pemakanan KKM (@BhgPemakananKKM) February 19, 2021
Furthermore, drinking 6 to 8 glasses of water a day is good for the health and function of the body.
Dr Adham also stated that aside from being a dietary guide, the food pyramid was used in the planning of food production and imports.
The last time the food pyramid was reviewed was in 2010, and before that, it was reviewed in 1999.
In reviewing the food pyramid, among the matters taken into account are the population’s eating habits, and increases in non-communicable diseases related to diet such as obesity, diabetes and hypertension.