Food Pyramid - The Four Sides of the Food Pyramid

It depends on the right selection

The four pyramid sides of the three-dimensional food pyramid are each assigned a food group. By the position of the food, a nutritional evaluation is made. As we know it from the original food pyramid, in the lower part of the pyramid are the foods that should preferably be on the menu.

Animal and vegetable fats

The top of the pyramid shows the less recommendable products. This is additionally marked by a traffic light bar. This moves from the green base (= nutritionally recommended) on a yellow midfield to a red tip (= nutritionally less recommendable). The evaluation of the food is based on criteria such as energy density, nutrient content, epidemiological findings and other nutritionally important factors (for example, content of phytochemicals, fat quality).

Fruits and vegetables have a high nutrient density, provide little energy and bursting with phytochemicals. That's why the traffic light is permanently GREEN on you, they make up the basis of the vegetable food. This is followed by legumes and whole-grain products such as wholemeal bread, wholemeal pasta, paddy rice. Potatoes, husked rice and cereal products made from white flour are in the midfield. The traffic light shines RED on sweets, cakes and munchies.

Animal products

Especially recommended are fish, low-fat milk and dairy products and low-fat meat. Low-fat products have a low energy content and provide many nutrients (for example, calcium, vitamin D, iron and B vitamins). It may be a bit fatter with the fish. High-fat fish such as salmon, mackerel, tuna and herring supply a particularly high intake of omega-3 fatty acids, which among others have very positive effects on the cardiovascular system. Fish, low-fat dairy and low-fat meat form the broad base of the pyramid. It is followed by fatty meat, higher-fat milk and dairy products.

Less recommended foods such as fatty meats, eggs, cream, etc. are found in the upper part of the pyramid. Oils and fats should only account for a small part of our daily diet, as we have seen from the Nutrition Circle. It is particularly important to make the right choice.

The most valuable are rape and walnut oil, followed by wheat germ, olive, soy and olive oil. These oils have a particularly favorable fatty acid composition and a high vitamin E content. In the midfield are corn germ, sunflower oil and margarine. Butter, lard and slat fat (for example, coconut and palm kernel fat) are less recommendable, among other things because of the high content of saturated fatty acids.


Drinking is vital. Fluid intake has a direct impact on health and performance. Therefore, the drinks are also in the center of the food circle. The traffic light shines GREEN on drinks that are low in energy. These include water, mineral water and sugar-free herbal and fruit teas. With green and black tea, coffee, fruit juice spritzers and light drinks, the traffic light jumps to YELLOW. RED flashes on high energy drinks like sodas, energy drinks, nectars, and fruit juice drinks.

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