Have You Gone Vegan? The Food Pyramid Just Did

Vegans are no longer left out; now, they too get a food pyramid to call their own. In response to the growing popularity of vegan and vegetarian lifestyles, Oldways has released a new pyramid. The pyramid is an updated version of the one created in 1997, and places more emphasis on fruits and vegetables than the original version.

Like in the traditional food pyramid, foods are broken down into categories. Whole grains have the most recommended servings (5-8), followed by vegetables (4-6) and fruits (3-4). Beans, peas, lentils and soy make up another level of the pyramid; then nuts, peanuts, seeds and peanut/nut butters. On the top levels are herbs, spices and plant oils and eggs and/or dairy. Covering up the tip of the pyramid, where dairy and eggs are located, reveals a completely vegan diet.

The old pyramid from 1997 did not place much emphasis on fresh produce. Though designed for vegetarian diets, the images of fruits and vegetables were not emphasized and limited to the sides of the illustration. Now holding the largest space on the pyramid, they demonstrate Oldways’ continued commitment to quality and whole foods.

A team of ten scientists were gathered to create the updated pyramid. After reviewing the data on plant-based diets that had been gathered over the years, they provided their recommendations on how the pyramid should be structured. Multiple variations of vegetarian diets have existed in different cultures throughout history, and the pyramid reflects the most recent iteration.

According to the Oldways website, “A plant-based diet can be an excellent source of all the necessary nutrients (protein, fats, carbohydrates, vitamins, minerals and all nine essential amino acids) for optimum health, particularly when a wide variety of foods are eaten each day.”

Oldways says their goal is for people to use their pyramid to help start and stay on a meatless diet. From the Oldways website, “This new pyramid reflects the vast variety of delicious, healthy foods, such as vegetables, fruits, nuts, seeds, whole grains, legumes, herbs and spices that fit into a healthy eating pattern.”


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Christine Jones
Christine J2 years ago

A picture/diagram would have added greatly to this informative article.

Val M.
Val M4 years ago


Fred Hoekstra
Fred Hoekstra4 years ago

Thank you Brandi, for Sharing this!

Andrew Pawley
Past Member 4 years ago

Good to know.

Elena T.
Elena Poensgen4 years ago

Thank you :)

Nathan Wrightsman
Nathan W4 years ago

Lyold. Sorry, my sober comment was off base, but your comment did not make any sense because you referred to the article, not the title. You did not mention the title at all. I you had read past the title you would have seen the article refers to the traditional food pyramid as well as the vegetarian food pyramid. I'm glad you don't drink. I don't either. I also eat meat. Your comments are off base too.

Lloyd H4 years ago

Nathan W., keeping wit the Thanksgiving spirit, "Stuff it!". First off I do not drink alcohol nor do I do any other recreational drugs. There is also the fact that the "OLDWAYS" pyramid linked to in the article is Vegan/Vegetarian not specifically Vegan. The fact that you do not like is that the Food Pyramid did not go Vegan and is not just for Cud Chewers, but that every one with a dietary preference updated their pyramids. So the header is false and misleading, the Food Pyramid did not go Vegan, the Vegans, like everyone else just updated theirs.

Dawn D.
Past Member 4 years ago

For what ever reason, meat disagrees with me, get very ill, after consuming meat sore gut, can't tolerate it in my system and for this reason and my dislike of the modern factory farming practices and cruel slaughtering methods, I have seen the light and have chosen a different path for the rest of my days. That doesn't mean, I look down my nose at other people and their choices because their journey is theirs and I have no idea what it is about or where they are headed for. I'm not on the same journey. But we do have to think about where our food is coming from and how it is produced and if it was cruelly produced or modified? Otherwise it will not matter if one is vegan, vegetarian, meat eating cannibal, fairy floss muncher, toffee apple lover or what ever else because we will all be sick, poisoned sorry so and so's.
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Lynn C.
Lynn C4 years ago


Kathleen R.
Kathleen R4 years ago