Individuals, especially those with ongoing medical conditions, should consult a qualified healthcare provider before adopting a new diet.
The USDA food pyramid is based on the 2005 Dietary Guides for Americans, a joint publication of the Department of Health and Human Services and the USDA. It is intended to serve as a quick mental and visual reference for patients who wish to improve their diets.
The other food pyramids are based on the concept of the USDA food pyramid. The Harvard food pyramid was created as an alternative to the food groups and suggested serving sizes that are presented in the USDA food pyramid. The Oldways food pyramids draw from traditions of healthy eating among certain populations of the United States and offer modified food groups for these individuals. Proponents of the vegetarian food pyramid note epidemiological data suggesting that this diet may lower risk of chronic diseases and may increase adult life expectancy.