A Dietitian’s Response to the 2015 Guidelines presented in the article Nutrition Panel: Egg with Coffee is A-OK, But Skip The Side of Bacon
If you are a foodie, nutrition nerd or general news enthusiast you know that recently the USDA committee in charge of presenting the Dietary Guidelines has pardoned cholesterol in their newest guidelines for 2015. This committee creates new guidelines every 5 years and for the past 40 years they have been ignoring the research and just rolling over their suggestion that cholesterol consumption should be limited to 300mg per day. I never thought I’d see the day that we would be told we could eat eggs for breakfast again. Woohoo!
While the new guidelines are taking a step in the right direction by forgiving cholesterol and placing more emphasis on limiting added sugar, there is still plenty of room for improvement. It seems that the committee wants to have winners and losers as it comes to food and nutrients. However, your body does not process food this way. Instead, we need to eat real food, in normal proportions as our individual needs dictate. That means no two of us are the same and no two diets should look the same either.
I am excited that sugar is now getting the treatment cholesterol once did, but for whatever reason we are still being told that meat is bad for us. While I agree conventional meat may not be the best for us, we as humans NEED protein and the healthy fats from healthy animals. We need to start putting more emphasis on the QUALITY of our food and maybe the taxes that may be placed on added sugar may be used to support our farmers. After all, I think it will benefit you most if you pay your farmer now instead of your doctor later.
We are moving in the right direction but we are still making the guidelines more complicated than they need to be. Remember to just eat real food in the forms that nature provides for us (i.e. meat, vegetables, fruits, nuts/seeds and healthy fats) because ultimately, nature knows best…not some governing committee that had it wrong for 40years…
FoodNarc Note: This post is a response to the recent release of new guidelines by a committee of nutrition experts appointed by the federal government. At FoodNarc we applaud the direction the guidelines are taking, but agree with Laura that they don’t go far enough. It is time to completely overhaul the dietary recommendations provided to citizens of the United States and break free from the special interests that have led to much of the the “conventional wisdom” that dominates nutritional science discussion. We would also like to note that while guidelines are beneficial, each of us needs to engage our food system more thoroughly and pay attention to how the food we eat nourishes our bodies and makes us feel. The primary takeaway from this, in our opinion, is to focus on returning to a real food diet and avoiding the highly processed FrankenFoods that dominate our grocery stores.
In addition to Laura’s comments below on the necessity of protein and healthy fat that animal sources of protein provide, it is also a critical source of many vitamins and fatty acids that are either inferior or difficult to obtain from plant sources. There are five (5) key nutrients that are plentiful in meat, dairy, and eggs. If you choose to avoid animal sources of nutrition, be sure to supplement your diet effectively to avoid deficiencies as the consequences can be severe.
- Vitamin B12
- Vitamin D3