Americans now have new dietary guidelines to abide by. They incorporate the current research outlining that most Americans consume more than the recommended intake of added sugar, sodium and saturated fats and not enough fruits, vegetables, whole grains, dairy products and healthy oils.

Among recommending increased vegetable and fruit intake, the report promotes a greater consumption of whole grains, seafood, lean meat, nuts and seeds. The report also includes physical activity recommendations:  150 minutes of moderate physical activity every day and at least 2 days/week of muscle-strengthening exercises.

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Interestingly, the guideline continues to recommend fat-free and low-fat dairy products, those of which are loaded with added sugar (to replace the fat). Much research to date has focused on excess sugar, not fat, as the culprit behind skyrocketing rates of obesity and type 2 diabetes. The report does mention, however, that less than 10 percent of calories should come from added sugar, including the amounts found in fat-free products.

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The new guidelines are interactive, extremely user-friendly, contain scientific evidence, resources, tips as well as concrete examples of healthy eating, including vegetarian options.

Simple and helpful tips like going from white bread to whole wheat, cooking with oil instead of butter and eating real fruit instead of a candied or dried fruit are presented.

But, do people actually care? Probably not.

“The public has never eaten the diet they recommend, and still does not today.” – Michael Jacobson, president of Center for Science in the Public Interest.

The guidelines are updated every 5 years as more research and scientific evidence is examined.

For more:

The guidelines

Is sugar definitely toxic?

We need to make people get angry about sugar – Dr. Aseem Malhotra

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