Biblical Food Pyramid Explained: What is it and is it Still Relevant?

October 2, 2021


biblical food pyramid

Everyone loves food. Chances are, you’ve already had some tasty morsel today, but the question is, “Was it truly healthy?” And, where does it fit in the food pyramid? Oh, and which pyramid is right? These questions lead us to the heart of life and health - the Bible food pyramid explained: what is it and is it still relevant?

The answer to the last question is a resounding, “Yes!”

Whether you’re trying to improve health, maintain health, or lose weight, healthy eating is key.

We’ve heard about food pyramids for years, and over time, they’ve changed to meet new information or health standards.

However, God’s plan for health never changes. 

That’s why it’s not only the foundation for how we live, but everything I do as The Biblical Nutritionist.

My ministry, books, and programs are designed to guide you to a balanced approach to improve health and understand God’s design. 

This starts with understanding God’s Word, applying modern scientific studies, and preparing nutritious, satisfying meals. 

I want you to experience the freedom of great health!

What Is The Bible Food Pyramid

what is the bible food pyramid

God’s plan includes great health and He’s given us an abundance of principles however, there’s no reference to a “food pyramid” in Scripture, nor is there a single section that addresses every aspect of healthy living. We do find His wisdom and direction sprinkled through many food references in His Word, though.

I’d say that makes food pretty important.

In taking these scriptures we can create a Biblical food pyramid that starts with the foundation of plenty of water. We can live a time without food, but hardly any time at all without water. 

On this foundation, is laid healthful foods:

  • Vegetables
  • Fruits
  • Whole Grain Bread & Pasta
  • Nuts & Seeds
  • Beans & Legumes
  • Milk & Milk Products
  • Wild Fish
  • Free Range & Grass-fed Eggs & Meat
  • Healthy Oils
  • Limited Natural Sweets

We find all of these food categories in Scripture, and they truly bless both our taste buds and the whole of our bodies.

When you have eaten and are satisfied, you shall bless the Lord your God for the good land which He has given you.

Deuteronomy 8:10

But nutrition plays a huge role in our energy and vitality. A study of nutrition and God’s design deserves our time so we can live productive lives until we reach heaven, not just until retirement.

But, how do we know we’re eating the best food?

Bible/ Mediterranean Food Pyramid Vs. "Modern" Food Pyramid

bible mediterranean food pyramid

In our culture, the most common visual provided is the food pyramid. Dieticians and physicians have given us several food pyramids, but the one with the most solid foundation - with extensive research going back fifty years - is the Mediterranean Pyramid. 

People have taken notice of this diet’s benefits. Restaurants, cooking shows, and cookbooks have embraced this way of meal planning. 

With good reason.

The Mediterranean pyramid maximizes natural, whole foods and minimizes highly processed ones. 

There are hundreds of thousands of “edible” items for sale on a typical day in the United States. Most grocery stores carry as many as 40,000 of these items. 

Many of which don’t fit a healthful diet.

The Mediterranean diet helps eliminate the health-busting ingredients. 

The traditional food pyramid, however, just focuses on broad food categories. There’s no discussion or acknowledgement that many included foods cause negative health effects.

Instead, healthful eating focuses on food that builds health and helps the body heal.

We want to eat foods that benefit, not harm.

inner circle

Let’s eliminate health-busting ingredients and increase health-promoting ones. 

This idea is always best.

The Mediterranean pyramid requires some tweaks to conform to the healthy living plan laid out in the Bible. Therefore, we’ve modified it by removing food and beverages that bring harm to the body and which God declared unclean in His Word.

While we’re not bound by Old Covenant law, foods considered unclean in biblical times are still so today.

If scripture declares certain foods “good” then we know they’re wholesome foods. 

What we need is a visual to remind us of the “good.”

The Freshest Ingredients To Build A Healthy Diet

healthy treasures fresh market

The Healthy Treasures Fresh Market–otherwise known as the Biblical Food Pyramid–accentuates the freshest ingredients to build a healthy diet. 

For the Healthy Treasures Fresh Market Pyramid, we’ve updated the Mediterranean Pyramid not only by eliminating unclean foods, but also by clarifying categories such as herbs, grains, and vegetables. We definitely want these to be easy to recognize!

Take a minute and study the Healthy Treasures Fresh Market Pyramid (image above)

How to Use the Food Guide Pyramid

Our bodies are not born with a favorite foods gene; favorites develop from culture and personal habits. So, if we change our habits, our taste preferences change. 

Many of us have been dieting on cheeseburgers and French fries or fried chicken with gravy. This type of eating dulls our natural taste for nutrient dense foods. 

Instead, we want a balanced diet plan focused on wholesome foods such as fruits and vegetables, whole grains and bread, clean meat, and other nutritious, life-giving foods.

Let’s awaken those innate sensitivities and broaden our food horizon and enjoy more and more of God’s blessing.

The biblical food pyramid represents all the categories of Bible foods, which are plentiful and full of variety.

The foods God gave us will please even the pickiest eater. I encourage you to try a new food each week (or each month). Even those with food restrictions due to health issues can benefit greatly.

As you and your family members sample new foods, they’ll discover a new favorite and hopefully several. 

Here are a few tools to help you in your discovery.

Biblical Food Pyramid Worksheet And Journaling

journaling

The food pyramid worksheet is a great launching point that’s super simple and easy to fit into everyday life.

Print it off and keep it on hand, using tally marks in each column for each day to track eating. As you improve in following the biblical food pyramid, celebrate by rewarding yourself with something not food related.

As you familiarize yourself with the biblical food pyramid and the wholesome foods it includes, it may be helpful to keep track of what you eat. 

The Hunger Satisfied Journal is a wonderful tool to use to keep track of food, hunger, and satisfaction.

Let me note, there are so many wonderful foods that wouldn’t fit on this pictorial representation of the biblical food pyramid!

God has gifted us with a tremendous variety of food. Biblical foods are vast and diverse.

We’d need a whole book to picture them all. As a matter of fact, one author wrote a children’s book highlighting 85 fruits and vegetables and still couldn’t include them all.

Benefits Of The Biblical Food Pyramid

benefits of the biblical food pyramid

Eating clean and wholesome food will help with weight loss, but the greatest benefits are in gaining better health, such as:

  • Boosting immune system
  • Protecting against heart disease
  • Reducing high blood pressure
  • Healthy digestive system
  • Helping prevent cancer
  • Healing liver disease
  • Correcting blood sugar metabolic problems
  • And so much more!

There’s a plethora of information about specific foods that help encourage eating for better health. I love how God not only gave us variety in taste, color, and texture, but also nutrients!

Scientific research consistently reveals more about the nutrients and healing properties the Lord packed into fruit trees, seed-bearing plants, field plants, meat, leafy vegetables, and others.

Health is a Journey, Not a Diet

The Bible provides the principles we need to eat for our good. As we familiarize ourselves with them and put them into practice, the Lord will bless us increasingly.

Change is challenging. Yet, with determination and a dependence on the Holy Spirit, it’s possible.

Health is a journey, not a diet. The biblical food pyramid isn’t meant to be a diet, but a lifestyle of eating healing foods. The health benefits of eating from these essential food groups are tremendous.

What do you think of the biblical food pyramid? What’s your favorite new food? I’d love for you to share in the comments below. I’ll sip on some tea while waiting to hear from you.

  • Love this post. Found it very helpful and I’m very grateful for the Biblical food pyramid. I also purchased the book apples vs asparagus while reading through this, so I can read it to my kids! I really love and appreciate you, Annette! You are such a help and blessing to me!

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