Quickly Rate Meals With OurPlate

Learn about HumanaNatura’s OurPlate Optimal Eating Guide

HumanaNatura’s OurPlate healthy eating model offers more than just important overall guidance on the best way to eat naturally and optimally.

You can also use the OurPlate model to quickly rate meals and meal options anytime. Rating meals with OurPlate is easy and powerful – quickly leading to new food and health awareness and improved eating choices.

With just a bit of practice, an OurPlate meal score can be created for any meal, following a few simple steps.

Rating Meals With OurPlate

OurPlate Rating

HumanaNatura’s OurPlate Meal Rating Summary (Click to Enlarge)

To rate a meal using HumanaNatura’s OurPlate healthy eating model, follow these five simple steps:

#1: Points for vegetables – give a meal six points if it is at least half vegetables by volume (excluding grains and beans, foods that are not part of the OurPlate approach). If the amount of raw veggies is less than half of the meal, adjust the points downward proportionately. In any case, the maximum score for included vegetables is six points, reflecting the naturally diminishing benefits of adding further vegetables to a meal, however healthy they may be.

#2: Points for natural proteins – give the meal an additional two points if one serving of a natural protein is included. As before, two points is the maximum score for protein, regardless of how much is included. In this case, this limit reflects not only diminishing benefits from added proteins in a meal, but also the significant waste of natural resources and risks of health reduction from long-term excesses of protein foods in our diet. Please note that HumanaNatura defines natural protein foods, in rough order of desirability, as tree nuts and seeds, fish, poultry, lean meats, eggs, and dairy (while dairy is not strictly natural, it is an acceptable meat substitute if well-tolerated – and especially in the case of unsweetened yogurts).

#3: Points for raw fruit – give the meal an additional two points if it includes at least one serving of fruit, or if fruit is included after the meal as a dessert. Once again, two points is the maximum score for added fruit.

#4: Take-down for other foods – subtract two points for each serving of other foods that are included in the meal, such as grains or beans, but this time with no limit on the number of points that can be taken away.

#5: Special take-down for sweets – subtract four points for each serving of sweets, including sugary foods and beverages, that are part of the meal, regardless of the sugar source and again with no limit on the number of points that can be taken away.

As you can see, the maximum possible meal score with this OurPlate rating formula is 10. In practice, this score is most easily achieved via vegetable-rich and health-optimal Salad Meals and Steam Meals that follow the Natural Eating guidelines of HumanaNatura’s Personal Health Program.

Importantly, however, many modern meals will score well below 10, and even below zero, reflecting their potential to have strong negative health effects on us. As highlighted by the five-step OurPlate rating formula, this is especially true when meals include unhealthy and unnatural sweets and foods with added sugars.

For example, a meal of pasta with fatty meat, a small salad, and a sweet dessert would score -6 (-2-2+2-4). To use a less dramatic example, a veggie-rich salad meal with fruit that used an unnatural protein like soy would score a 6 (+6+2-2).

Explore OurPlate & Get Healthier!

In practice, HumanaNatura has found this simple approach to meal rating accurately reflects the overall quality of most meals, and is a great short-cut to quickly and reliably gauge the personal (and ecological) health impacts of the meals we eat each day. Note that the rating system doesn’t apply to snacks, but the overall OurPlate model does – favoring raw veggies and then fruits and natural proteins over other snack choices.

Learn more about preparing delicious OurPlate meals and HumanaNatura’s overall food guidelines via the many example meal posts on NaturaLife, and explore HumanaNatura’s detailed nutritional guidelines via the Natural Eating section of our Personal Health Program.

As you will quickly see, the OurPlate healthy eating model and HumanaNatura’s larger technique of Natural Eating form a powerful but flexible approach to modern eating. Using the OurPlate model, even for just a few weeks, you will soon find that HumanaNatura and OurPlate offer a simple, natural, and often profoundly health-transforming approach to our daily meals.

And as you achieve new personal health, fitness, and well-being from the HumanaNatura approach to eating, perhaps you will become interested in HumanaNatura’s other natural health techniques – Natural Exercise, Natural Living, and Natural Communities – which you can learn about at The Four HumanaNatura Techniques.

Tell others about HumanaNatura…give the gift of modern natural life!

  1. #1 by mlundegren on June 27, 2012 - 21:44

  2. #2 by Josh on September 2, 2012 - 04:25

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    Awesome article.

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