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When Butter Was Its Own Food Group

Tuesday, November 13, 2012

Before food was organized into cohesive groups or placed into a pyramid or a plate, The United States Department of Agriculture introduced the Basic 7 Food Chart. Developed in 1943 as part of the nationwide implementation of wartime food rationing, the “Basic 7” stressed the need to maintain proper nutrition and healthy eating habits that were compatible with the limitation of certain foods. The Basic 7 food groups were:

1. Green and yellow vegetables (some raw; some cooked, frozen or canned)
2. Oranges, tomatoes, grapefruit (or raw cabbage or salad greens)
3. Potatoes and other vegetables and fruits (raw, dried, cooked, frozen or canned)
4. Milk and milk products (fluid, evaporated, dried milk, or cheese)
5. Meat, poultry, fish, or eggs (or dried beans, peas, nuts, or peanut butter)
6. Bread, flour, and cereals (natural whole grain, or enriched or restored)
7. Butter and fortified margarine (with added Vitamin A)

The USDA stressed the importance of groups one through three not only for their nutritional value, but due to the fact that the foods included could all be grown to some degree in personal Victory Gardens, thus saving ration points for more limited items such as meat and sugar.

It is also interesting that butter was a category unto itself.

Yesterday was a solid day. I drank my water, ate within calories, walked in the morning, and jumped on the stationary bike last night. It wasn't a long time on the bike, but it was a start. I need to figure out where I packed my iPod so I can use that while I'm doing my cardio.

I did give into temptation at the grocery store last night and bought a box of pumpkin spice cake donuts. They only come out once each year and they looked SOOOO good. But by the time I got home, I had myself under control. I didn't eat any of them. In fact, the donuts never left my trunk. Tonight is trash night so they'll go from my trunk to the trash can.

Today has been good so far. I ate a big healthy breakfast. I brought my lunch and had a bunch of veggies. I've already had my water and a walk. Things are on a roll.
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Member Comments About This Blog Post
    1856 days ago
    I think I like a wheel with butter as a food group :p
    Good for you on the exercise and resisting temptation.
    1857 days ago
  • -POOKIE-
    I love this chart so much.

    We where just discussing the other day how healthy the UK was during the war.

    And anything adding the deliciousness that is butter as its own group gets the go ahead from me!
    1857 days ago
  • KITT52
    very interesting....thanks for the info...
    1857 days ago
    Reading about the "basic seven" was interesting. I didn't know that.
    1857 days ago
  • THOMS1
    emoticon mmm emoticon Sometimes it is hard to resist temptation but you did very well.
    1857 days ago
    Julia Child was the only chef on television back then. I'm surprised wine isn't a food group on there, too! emoticon
    1857 days ago
    I saw those same doughnuts and had to bite myself to get by them. LOL.

    Butter deserves it's own category. LOL.
    1857 days ago
  • EWL978
    You done good!!

    I love that food wheel and think that I can recall "way back" in school, in cooking class...yes, we had those!!

    Are you sure you want to dump those donuts without at least having a wee little bite from one?? You could be sorry sense in giving yourself something like that to have angst over.

    I envy you the motivation of ALL that exercise...I just don't have the "push" to do it, of these days I'll just get so frustrated that I'll cave.

    Keep on keeping on...and good luck in your continued motivation!!

    1857 days ago
    I surprised that bacon was not its own food group!
    1857 days ago
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