Health Benefits

Eating a diet rich in vegetables and fruits as part of an overall healthy dietmay reduce risk for heart disease, including heart attack and stroke.
Eating a diet rich in some vegetables and fruits as part of an overall healthy diet may protect against certain types of cancers.
Diets rich in foods containing fiber, such as some vegetables and fruits, may reduce the risk of heart disease, obesity, and type 2 diabetes.
Eating vegetables and fruits rich in potassium as part of an overall healthy diet may lower blood pressure, and may also reduce the risk of developing kidney stones and help to decrease bone loss.
Eating foods such as fruits that are lower in calories per cup instead of some other higher-calorie food may be useful in helping to lower calorie intake.








Any vegetable or 100% vegetable juice counts as a member of the Vegetable Group.

Vegetables may be raw or cooked; fresh, frozen, canned, or dried/dehydrated; and may be whole,

cut-up, or mashed.

Based on their nutrient content, vegetables are organized into 5 subgroups: dark green vegetables,

starchy vegetables, red and orange vegetables, beans and peas, and other vegetables.



Health Benefits

Eating a diet rich in vegetables and fruits as part of an overall healthy diet may reduce risk for heart disease, including heart attack and stroke.
Eating a diet rich in some vegetables and fruits as part of an overall healthy diet may protect against certain types of cancers.
Diets rich in foods containing fiber, such as some vegetables and fruits, may reduce the risk of heart disease, obesity, and type 2 diabetes.
Eating vegetables and fruits rich in potassium as part of an overall healthy diet may lower blood pressure, and may also reduce the risk of developing kidney stones and help to decrease bone loss.
Eating foods such as vegetables that are lower in calories per cup instead of some other higher-calorie food may be useful in helping to lower calorie intake.







Any food made from wheat, rice, oats, cornmeal, barley or another cereal grain is a grain product. Bread, pasta, oatmeal, breakfast cereals, tortillas, and grits are examples of grain products.

Grains are divided into 2 subgroups, Whole Grains and Refined Grains.

Whole grains contain the entire grain kernel ― the bran, germ, and endosperm.

Examples include:

whole-wheat flour
bulgur (cracked wheat)
oatmeal
whole cornmeal
brown rice



Health Benefits  

Consuming whole grains as part of a healthy diet may reduce the risk of heart disease.
Consuming foods containing fiber, such as whole grains, as part of a healthy diet, may reduce constipation. 
Eating whole grains may help with weight management.
Eating grain products fortified with folate before and during pregnancy helps prevent neural tube defects during fetal development




What Foods Are in the Protein Foods Group?

[bowl of stew] All foods made from meat, poultry, seafood, beans and peas, eggs,

processed soy products, nuts, and seeds are considered part of the Protein Foods Group.

Beans and peas are also part of the Vegetable Group. For more information on beans and peas,

see Beans and Peas Are Unique Foods.

Select a variety of protein foods to improve nutrient intake and health benefits, including at least

8 ounces of cooked seafood per week. Young children need less, depending on their age and

calorie needs. The advice to consume seafood does not apply to vegetarians. Vegetarian options

in the Protein Foods Group include beans and peas, processed soy products, and nuts and seeds. Meat and poultry choices should be lean or low-fat.

Health Benefits

Meat, poultry, fish, dry beans and peas, eggs, nuts, and seeds supply many nutrients. These include protein, B vitamins (niacin, thiamin, riboflavin, and B6), vitamin E, iron, zinc, and magnesium.
Proteins function as building blocks for bones, muscles, cartilage, skin, and blood. They are also building blocks for enzymes, hormones, and vitamins. Proteins are one of three nutrients that provide calories (the others are fat and carbohydrates).
B vitamins found in this food group serve a variety of functions in the body. They help the body release energy, play a vital role in the function of the nervous system, aid in the formation of red blood cells, and help build tissues.
Iron is used to carry oxygen in the blood. Many teenage girls and women in their child-bearing years have iron-deficiency anemia. They should eat foods high in heme-iron (meats) or eat other non-heme iron containing foods along with a food rich in vitamin C, which can improve absorption of non-heme iron.
Magnesium is used in building bones and in releasing energy from muscles.
Zinc is necessary for biochemical reactions and helps the immune system function properly.
EPA and DHA are omega-3 fatty acids found in varying amounts in seafood. Eating 8 ounces per week of seafood may help reduce the risk for heart disease.

What Foods Are Included in the Dairy Group?

All fluid milk products and many foods made from milk are considered part of this food group.

Most Dairy Group choices should be fat-free or low-fat. Foods made from milk that retain their

calcium content are part of the group. Foods made from milk that have little to no calcium,

such as cream cheese, cream, and butter, are not. Calcium-fortified soymilk (soy beverage)

is also part of the Dairy Group.


Health Benefits

Intake of dairy products is linked to improved bone health, and may reduce the risk of osteoporosis.
The intake of dairy products is especially important to bone health during childhood and adolescence, when bone mass is being built.
Intake of dairy products is also associated with a reduced risk of cardiovascular disease and type 2 diabetes, and with lower blood pressure in adults.

Any fruit or 100% fruit juice counts as part of the Fruit Group. Fruits may be fresh, canned, frozen, or dried, and may be whole, cut-up, or pureed. 

What Foods Are In The Vegetable Group

What Foods Are In The Fruit Group

Helping Your Kids Stay Healthy!

What Foods Are In The Grains Group

At Cornerstone we follow the guidelines of the USDA's Food Plate.  What does this mean for your child?  We focus on the whole child, which not only means their mental well being, but their physical well being as well.  This begins with diet! Our cook receives annual nutritional training to ensure your child is receiving well balanced meals while in our care.