This is when I like to take a deep breath and go back to the research. Womp womp. Not a very glamorous task, but here in the U.S., a team of professionals re-evaluates these guidelines every 5 years! Enter… the Dietary Guidelines for Americans (DGA).
- What Americans eat: No surprises here. We eat too much saturated fat, sodium and calories. We also eat too little fiber, vitamins (A, D, E, C) and minerals (folate, calcium, magnesium, potassium).
- What Americans should eat:
- MORE vegetables, fruit, whole grains, seafood, legumes and nuts
- SOME low- and non-fat dairy products
- LESS red and processed meat
- EVEN LESS sugar-sweetened foods and beverages and refined grains
These three patterns all emphasize the same two points —
- Maximize on nutrient dense foods like fruits, vegetables, whole grains, lean protein and dairy.
- Highly limit your discretionary calories to less than 200 a day, if that.