Every five years, the US Department of Health and Human Services releases an updated edition of the Dietary Guidelines of America. Though not very many Americans read this booklet itself, everyone is impacted by the changes it prompts in the food industry. For example, the last edition called for more whole grains and less sugar in American diets in order to maintain health, resulting in an overhaul of what grains General Mills and breadmakers used in their products. Some nutritionists in the past, though, have been frustrated by the sometimes vague advice this publication provides. As the food lobby groups hold great power in Washington, some nutritionists say hesitation on the government's part is not very surprising.
However, the current edition tries quite seriously to address the issue of obesity and overeating in America. It is very clear in advocating that fruits and vegetable should take up over half of your plate at mealtimes and to cut down in processed sodium, fats and sugars. And the very clear, basic bottom line: eat less.
How might this affect consumers? The New York Times predicts pressure on the food industry to reformulate sodium, fat, and sugar-rich processed foods and for restaurants to reduce portion sizes, many of which are currently large enough to serve two people according to the government guidelines.
To read more, go to the article in the New York Times.