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Three Reasons Why 2015 Dietary Guidelines for Americans Are Useless

Three Reasons Why 2015 Dietary Guidelines for Americans Are Useless

Every five years, the government tries to teach Americans how to eat properly and what kind of food to put in their mouths. Eat more vegetables. Do not abuse sweets. Stay away from fast food. All these recommendations are based on the best available and most up-to-date nutritional science for leading a healthy life and are familiar to us from childhood. But what do we really know about healthy nutrition for sure? Do we really believe in the absolute invincibility of the dietary recommendations?

Earlier this month, the Department of Agriculture and Health and Human Services issued the new Dietary Guidelines for Americans—a 571-page report containing the nationwide standard for national food programs. The guidelines were first issued in 1980 and are updated every five years. A group of fourteen appointed high-competent scientists and doctors have been working on the report that designed to help people make healthy dietary choices and give health-care providers, public health agencies, and educational institutions a pillar for creating their federal nutrition policy. That means that the nutrition plan your doctor recommends you or your child’s school lunch menu were likely to be developed on the basis of these recommendations.

In short, this time, the guidelines urge Americans to cut back on sugar and sodium, eat less red meat and food that contains saturated fats, and focus on vegetables. And now you can safely drink up to five cups of coffee per day without a twinge of conscience! Moreover, the doctors said that you should eat as little cholesterol as possible, so eat egg yolks (according to the doctors, they are not high in saturated fat) and wash them down with another steaming cup of Americano.

As you can see, the new Dietary Guidelines look more than controversial: along with some well-known food recommendation we used to follow, it includes a number of points that provoked a lot of healthy debates. Some public health experts express concern that the guidelines contain mixed recommendations that could be interpreted by people differently. So, while you are thinking whether the suggestions are right or wrong, we want to tell you why these guidelines (or any other ones) are useless in some sense.


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