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USDA and HHS Announce New Dietary Guidelines

Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack and Secretary of the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) Kathleen Sebelius today announced the release of the 2010 Dietary Guidelines for Americans, the federal government’s evidence-based nutritional guidance to promote health, reduce the risk of chronic diseases, and reduce the prevalence of overweight and obesity through improved nutrition and physical activity.

The new 2010 Dietary Guidelines for Americans focus on balancing calories with physical activity, and encourage Americans to consume more healthy foods like vegetables, fruits, whole grains, fat-free and low-fat dairy products, and seafood, and to consume less sodium, saturated and trans fats, added sugars, and refined grains.

The 2010 Dietary Guidelines for Americans include 23 Key Recommendations for the general population and six additional Key Recommendations for specific population groups, such as women who are pregnant. Key Recommendations are the most important messages within the Guidelines in terms of their implications for improving public health.  The recommendations are intended as an integrated set of advice to achieve an overall healthy eating pattern. More consumer-friendly advice and tools, including a next generation Food Pyramid, will be released by USDA and HHS in the coming months.

Some of the Key Recommendations included in the Guidelines include:

  • Prevent and/or reduce overweight and obesity through improved eating and physical activity behaviors.
  • Reduce daily sodium intake to less than 2,300 milligrams (mg) and further reduce intake in specific population groups.
  • Reduce the intake of calories from solid fats and added sugars.
  • Increase fruit and vegetable intake and replace refined grains with whole grains.
  • Select an eating pattern that meets nutrient needs over time at an appropriate calorie level.

The 2010 Dietary Guidelines is available at www.dietaryguidelines.gov.

For more information on dietary guidelines, see www.health.gov/dietaryguidelines  and www.healthfinder.gov/prevention

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