New dietary guidelines, boiled down
Are you as excited as I am about the release yesterday of the new Dietary Guidelines for Americans 2010?
Probably no one is more excited, or perhaps relieved, than the folks who have been working for years to craft the new document. They've had to sort through lots of scientific evidence and consider the opinions of everyone from the National Cattlemen's Beef Association to the pro-vegetarian Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine, and come to some consensus as to what the document should advise about how Americans should eat.
The 100-plus-page brochure (available here in PDF form) offers guidance on everything from fish consumption (everyone, including pregnant women, should eat more) to improving Americans' access to healthful foods. It all boils down to two key messages. Americans should:
- Maintain calorie balance over time to achieve and sustain a healthy weight.
- Focus on consuming nutrient-dense foods and beverages.
Still, there's a certain air of resignation to an accompanying document issued on the Dietary Guidelines Web site called "Selected Messages for Consumers." Here it is, in its entirety:
Dietary Guidelines 2010
Selected Messages for Consumers
Take action on the Dietary Guidelines by making changes in these three
Choose steps that work for you and start today.
• Enjoy your food, but eat less.
• Avoid oversized portions.
Foods to Increase
• Make half your plate fruits and vegetables.
• Switch to fat-free or low-fat (1%) milk.
Foods to Reduce
• Compare sodium in foods like soup, bread, and frozen meals -- and
choose the foods with lower numbers.
• Drink water instead of sugary drinks.
That, you can almost hear the authors conceding, may be about all the guidance many of us can absorb.
But just think: What if we all just took these basic baby steps? I will if you will.
Do you intend to read and follow the Dietary Guidelines for Americans 2010? Please let us know in today's poll!
Jennifer LaRue Huget
| February 1, 2011; 7:00 AM ET
Categories: Dietary Guidelines, Nutrition and Fitness, Obesity
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