Updated once every five years, the Obama administration released the latest version of the Dietary Guidelines for Americans. The latest recommendations promote a diet rich in a variety of vegetables, fruits, grains and protein sources. The guidelines were formed by recommendations from the 2015 Dietary Guidelines Advisory Committee—composed of prestigious researchers in the fields of nutrition, health, and medicine, and by consideration of public and federal agency comments.
Though meats were feared to be in committee’s crosshairs, the 2015-20120 Dietary Guidelines for Americans say eating lean meat is still OK and Americans do not have to cut back on eggs and sodium as it was earlier suggested. Sugar, particularly added sugars, received the rougher treatment from the committee. A new recommendation suggests a healthy diet limits added sugars to less than 10 percent of daily calories, or about 200 calories a day.
Other recommendations include limiting saturated fats to less than 10 percent of daily calories and keeping sodium intake under 2,300 mg per day. The guidelines also remove a daily limit on dietary cholesterol—300 mg a day based according to the 2010 guidelines—noting recent research that suggests cholesterol in the bloodstream is more complicated than once believed. This is good news for egg lovers as the new guidelines include eggs in all three recommended health eating patterns.
“Protecting the health of the American public includes empowering them with the tools they need to make healthy choices in their daily lives," says Sylvia Burwell, secretary of the Department of Health and Human Services. “By focusing on small shifts in what we eat and drink, eating healthy becomes more manageable. The Dietary Guidelines provide science-based recommendations on food and nutrition so people can make decisions that may help keep their weight under control, and prevent chronic conditions, like Type 2 diabetes, hypertension, and heart disease.”
The full 2015-2020 Dietary Guidelines for Americans can be found at dietaryguidelines.gov.