St. Louis, MO, October 26, 2010 In an insightful Commentary in the November issue of the Journal of the American Dietetic Association, Linda Van Horn, PhD, RD, Editor-in-Chief of the Journal, Chair of the Dietary Guidelines Advisory Committee, and Professor and Associate Dean, Northwestern University, Feinberg School of Medicine, highlights the key features and noteworthy findings of the 2010 US Dietary Guidelines Advisory Committee (DGAC) Report. While many of the recommendations from previous reports are reinforced, new evidence-based findings will help registered dietitians and other health care providers prioritize effective approaches towards facilitating better eating habits among Americans.
Dietary Goals for Americans (DGA) were first set in 1977 at a time when the average total fat intake was 42% of total energy intake, saturated fatty acids (SFA) intake was about 14%, and cardiovascular disease mortality was at an all-time high. Population-wide improvement in these parameters has occurred. By 2010, average American intake of total fat and SFA has decreased significantly to 33.6% and 11.4%, respectively still higher than recommended, but certainly improved.
Meanwhile, the obesity epidemic in the US continues. "The literal 'elephant in the room' is the persistent and pervasive obesity epidemic that continues to perpetuate and perplex health care providers in all specialty areas, as well as consumers," commented Professor Van Horn. This report indicates that the US population consumes inadequate nutrient-rich foods such as whole grains, fruits, and vegetables, and overconsumes calorie-dense, nutrient-poor foods that include solid fats, added sugars, salt, and refined grains. The result is a population that is overfed and undernourished.
Key features of the 2010 US DGAC Report:
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