The scoop on Canada’s New Food Guide

Montreal - Tuesday, February 11, 2020

Since the launch of the new Canada’s Food Guide in January 2019, its visual representation of a healthy plate has led to some nutrition misconceptions; such as:

  • Milk products are no longer part of the food guide
  • Milk is not healthy
  • To be vegan is healthier
  • Fruit juices offer no nutritional benefit

From the ages of 5 to 16, our students are under critical growth and development and proper nutrition through a balanced diet with the recommended nutrient intake is essential to fuel both physical and mental development.  The exclusion of foods poses a risk of nutrient deficiencies which will impact overall growth and health.  In my experience as a Dietitian, in talking with elementary and high school students, it is apparent that they are misinformed about the new food guide and are being negatively influenced by non-credible social platforms about nutrition!

Nutrition and Food Services have prepared a bilingual fact sheet on the New Canada’s Food Guide.  The Scoop on Canada’s New Food Guide provides an overview of the recommendations by Health Canada and clarifies the above misconceptions to ensure that accurate information is being communicated to students. 

The previous food guide, which was published in 2007, categorized foods into a rainbow of 4 food groups; namely, the grain products, vegetables and fruit, milk products and meat and alternatives. 

The Eat Well Plate food guide no longer categorizes foods into 4 food groups, but rather demonstrates the concept of variety and healthy eating as a plate. 

The Eat Well Plate snapshot represents your overall intake for the day including snacks. Eating a variety of foods provide various nutrients needed to grow, learn and be healthy.