Nina Teicholz: Sign petition to urge Congress to change dietary guidelines

Will beef have its share of the dinner plate once the 2015 Dietary Guidelines for Americans have been finalized? Not really, if the Dietary Guidelines for Americans Committee (DGAC) has its way.

In fact, as I’ve written in previous blog posts, DGAC is recommending a more plant-based diet, ignoring a large body of evidence that points to the benefits of animal fats and proteins in the diet. What’s worse is they are not only basing their recommendations on poor science, but they have also factored in their personal ideals about sustainability and the environment, which goes well beyond the scope that the dietary recommendations are supposed to make.

READ: 5 things you need to know about the 2015 Dietary Guidelines

Nina Teicholz, author of “Big Fat Surprise,” is urging her contacts to sign a petition to force Congress to change or review the guidelines before December when the updated recommendation are set to be released.

Teicholz listed four ways the Dietary Guidelines for Americans impact everyone, including:

  1.  They determine what kinds of foods you can buy, since manufacturers aiming for "healthy" claims must make their foods low in fat. The basic food supply is now low fat, high carb.
  2. Governments around the world follow them. America's Dietary Guidelines have long been considered the "gold standard.”
  3. They determine the foods served in the School Lunch program, as well as the foods in SNAP (formerly food stamps) and programs for WIC, (Women, Infants and Children), the elderly and the military. Altogether, one-fourth of Americans eat these meals once a month. 
  4. They determine education for all nutritionists, dietitians and most physicians, so health professionals on the front lines are all getting—and giving--this advice. 

READ: How people become critical of the very food that makes them secure

Congress met last week to discuss the dietary recommendations, and many of the nation’s leaders are starting to question the validity of the past 30 years of nutritional advice offered to Americans.

  • “Are Americans more healthy or less healthy since the Guidelines have been published. Have these guidelines, you know, somehow failed?...They don’t seem like they’re accomplishing their objective.”  -- Rep. Glenn Thompson (R-PA).
  • “I just want you to understand from my constituents, most of them don't believe this stuff anymore … and so that's why I say I wonder why we're doing this.” --Rep. Collin Peterson (D-MN)  
  • "I have heard concerns that…[the scientific advisory committee] has ignored a large, credible and growing body of peer-reviewed science on low-carb diets, as it contradicts the evidence from previous guidelines." —Rep. Hartzler (R-MO)

The guidelines are only updated every five years, so now is the time to act.

To sign the petition to request the White House review, click here.

Are you concerned about the dietary guidelines? Will you be signing the petition? Share your thoughts in the comments section below.

The opinions of Amanda Radke are not necessarily those of beefmagazine.com or Penton Agriculture.

 

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