Using MyPlate

Just grabbing food when you're hungry may not be the best plan. But it doesn't need to be complicated!

There are six main food groups to help you choose a healthy meal:

The Starch and Starchy Vegetables GroupUSDA MyPlate

The Fruit Group

The Vegetable Group

The Meat, Meat Substitutes, Eggs, and Cheese Group

The Milk and Yogurt Group

The Fats and Oils Group

It is important to eat foods from each group every day. The type and the amount of food that you chose to eat can have either positive or negative effects on your health. These food groups are included in MyPlate, except for Fats and Oils.

The same foods will be important whether you have diabetes or not. However, the amounts may be different from MyPlate to whatever food tracking system you are using. One of the most popular is the carbohydrate counting system (carb counting) using carb units

In the carb counting system, for instance, raw vegetables are not counted as long as the total number of carbs eaten is less than 20 from this food. In one cup of raw vegetables, there are 5 grams of carbohydrate. If you ate this five times in one day or ate two cups of raw vegetables three times a day, that would add up to more than 20 grams and would have to be counted as part of your carbohydrate allowance.

In MyPlate, the recommendation is to eat 4 to 5 servings of vegetables per day. This may not be what your meal plan tells you to eat. So, while MyPlate can be used by those who have diabetes, the diet plan discussed with you by your dietitian should guide your food choices. If you haven’t talked to a dietitian, ask your doctor at your next visit, or go to At the far right of the green top bar, click on “Find a Dietitian”.

You might also want to check out the MyPlate app at