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Build Your Own Healthy Plate


Myplate image

Do you know what food groups are part of a healthy plate? Vegetables, fruits, grains, protein, and dairy foods are all important. They provide vitamins, minerals, and other compounds that keep the body healthy. MyPlate can help you remember to include these foods. It can be used for kids and adults of all ages!

Practice using MyPlate in your daily routine, and soon it will become a habit as simple as brushing your teeth or washing your hands. Get out crayons or coloring pencils and a piece of paper and follow the steps below to draw a colorful MyPlate-inspired meal!

Step 1: Ask an adult to print the MyPlate Coloring Sheet or get a blank piece of paper for you to create your plate. If making your own plate, draw a circle by hand, or ask an adult to bring you a plate to trace.

Step 2: Choose one type of protein food, such as grilled chicken or black beans. Draw it on the bottom right section of your plate.
Step 3: Pick one type of vegetable, such as roasted carrots or stir-fried broccoli. Draw it on the bottom left section of your plate.
Step 4: Think about one type of fruit that you like, such as blueberries or sliced apples. Draw it on the top left section of your plate.
Step 5: Pick one type of grain, such as sliced bread, brown rice, or noodles. Draw it on the top right section of your plate.
Step 6: What is the last food group to add? If you guessed dairy, you are correct! Make a small circle next to your plate, and draw a dairy food or dairy alternative, such as yogurt, milk, or fortified soy milk, to include in your meal.
Step 7: Congratulations on building your MyPlate meal! Ask an adult to display it on your fridge as a reminder to choose healthy foods whenever you are in the kitchen.

Parents, caregivers, and teachers: explore more resources to help kids eat well! Use the MyPlate Plan to find what amount to get from each food group based on age, sex, and activity level. In general, MyPlate recommends these daily amounts for kids ages 5 to 8:

  • 5 to 2.5 cups of vegetables
  • 1 to 2 cups of fruits
  • 4 to 6-ounce equivalents of grains, including 2 to-3-ounce equivalents from whole grains
  • 3 to 5.5-ounce equivalents of protein foods
  • 5 cups of dairy

Photos courtesy of, Adobe Stock and USDA Flickr