Nutritionists Object to New Dietary Guidelines

We all want to live healthy lives and eat better. But most of us need help! It can be hard to figure out what’s right. We always try to eat a sensible, healthy diet. And we look to experts for assistance to know what can help us reach our health goals. The new dietary guidelines for Americans were released last week, but they might not be as helpful as we would like.

The guidelines are published by the U.S. Departments of Agriculture and Health and Human Services. They suggest limiting added sugar to 10 percent of your daily calories. However, that goes entirely against what a committee of scientists said when they suggested that we have less than six percent of our calories from added sugar. The guidelines also say that you should limit yourself to two alcoholic drinks a day. In contrast, the committee said that one should be the maximum. The Dietary Guidelines Advisory Committee had given the government their medical recommendations, but they were rejected.

The guidelines also set out recommendations for babies and toddlers for the first time ever that scientists and doctors say are based on weak evidence. There has been so much outcry over many points in the guidelines that a letter from the Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine calls for them to be rewritten.

It’s so frustrating when you are just looking for information, to hit so many walls! You would think that the dietary guidelines would be helpful. But, the doctors’ group claims that industries have paid to have their foods favored and other practices have been manipulated. People on both sides of the guidelines are going back and forth at each other in a “he said, she said” fight that doesn’t help folks who want more information about eating a healthy diet.

We always talk about self-advocating. When you are trying to make these choices and, when the research is challenging, speak to your doctor who knows your health history. Your doctor can tell you if there are foods you should avoid. Your doctor can always tell you about foods that would be beneficial to your diet, about your portion size, calorie or health goals and what your diet should look like. Your general practitioner might feel more comfortable directing you to a nutritionist or have resources that they think might benefit you.

It’s all about your personal needs. These current guidelines are being criticized for being heavily “one-size-fits-all.” And we know that never works! If you are looking for the best medical guidance, these broad strokes most likely won’t be for you, especially not as they contain so much added sugar!    

Image: Sharon McCutcheon via Pexels
January 06, 2021
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