What are the Xyris food groups?

The Xyris food group system, developed for use in FoodWorks Professional and our other software applications, allows you to analyse diets, recipes and meal plans by food group, and thus investigate food patterns.

The Xyris food group system uses Australian food composition data, including extensive brand name data. It is informed by the Australian Guide to Healthy Eating (AGHE), and adds power through its computational approach, which draws on concepts from the USDA Food Patterns Equivalents Database (FPED).

The Xyris food groups

The Xyris food groups and subgroups are:


  • Refined grains
  • Whole grains


  • Citrus, melons and berries
  • Other fruit
  • Fruit juice


  • Dark green vegetables
  • Red and orange vegetables
    • Tomatoes
    • Other red and orange vegetables (excludes tomatoes)
  • Starchy vegetables
    • Potatoes
    • Other starchy vegetables*
  • Legumes (counted both as vegetables and protein foods e.g. soybeans, lentils)
  • Other vegetables*

Protein foods

  • Red meats (beef, veal, pork, lamb, game)
  • Poultry (chicken, turkey, other fowl)
  • Eggs
  • Processed meats (frankfurters, sausage, corned beef, cured ham and luncheon meat made from beef, pork, poultry)
  • Organ meats (from beef, veal, pork lamb, game, poultry)
  • Seafood high in LC n-3 fatty acids
  • Seafood low in LC n-3 fatty acids
  • Nuts and seeds
  • Legumes (counted both as vegetables and protein foods e.g. soybeans, lentils)
  • Soy products (excludes calcium fortified soy milk and whole soybeans)


  • Milk
  • Cheese
  • Yoghurt
  • Milk alternatives (beverages with at least 100 mg of calcium per 100 g e.g. soy milk, rice milk, almond milk)

Oils equivalents (fats naturally occurring in nuts, seeds, avocado, seafoods, and unhydrogenated vegetable oils; excludes palm oil and coconut oil)

Solid fat equivalents (fats naturally occurring in meat, poultry, eggs, dairy, fully or partially hydrogenated oils, shortening, palm oil and coconut oil)

Added sugars

Alcoholic drinks

Water** (e.g. diet soft drink; also includes water that is an ingredient in recipes; excludes water that is a component in foods)

Miscellaneous** (e.g. most herbs and spices, baking powder)

Unclassified (food that could not be assigned to groups e.g. casserole)

* Vegetables that contribute to "other starchy vegetables" include cassava, taro, corn, white sweet potato.

Vegetables that contribute to "other vegetables" include seaweed, garlic, beetroot, avocado, wasabi, peas, parsnip, artichoke, onion, water chestnut, spring onion, chilli, snow peas, pickles, brussels sprout, shallot, celeriac, kohlrabi, leek, mushroom, ginger, eggplant, cabbage, squash, green bean, cauliflower, okra, turnip, swede, broccoli, bean sprout, fennel, asparagus, radish, choko, zucchini, olive, capsicum, alfalfa sprout, cucumber, chicory, celery, hairy melon, bamboo shoot, bitter melon, rosella flower.

** By default, these food groups are not visible in the Analysis Pane. To enable them, in FoodWorks, on the File menu, click Database Properties, then click Nutrients & Components. In the left box, click Food Groups. Then in the Nutrient & Components box, check Water and Miscellaneous. Click Apply.



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