Perhaps it’s because the majority of the US population isn’t listening. Or maybe the average American never got the message. Whatever the reason, the government is trying a new tact to persuade people to improve their eating habits.
The new U.S. dietary guidelines are designed to be very clear and direct: they spell out SoFAS, which translated means we should avoid extra calories from ‘Solid Fats and Added Sugars.’
“We want to move away from our overreliance in the past on sugar and sodium and saturated fat,” USDA Secretary Tom Vilsack said. The new dietary guidelines come at a time of growing concern over the obesity epidemic in this country and the health issues it brings.
Along with advising more exercise for all ages, the USDA is pushing an increased intake of fruits and vegetables. No surprises there, but changing people’s habits and likes will not be easy. As an example, pizza is a major source of the food types Americans should avoid. Also on the cautionary list are processed foods, which are typically high in sodium.
Here’s an overview of the new guidelines:
* Eat more seafood — at least 8 ounces a week
* Eat more fruits and vegetables
* Substitute healthy oils for solid fats
* Lower your sodium intake
* Avoid fast foods
* Exercise more
* Read food labels
* Substitute whole grains for refined grains
* Eat more beans and peas
* Get plenty of fiber, potassium, and vitamin D
* Eat/drink more nonfat or low-fat dairy products
* Replace high-fat meats with lean meats
* For some Americans, drink less alcohol
* Get off your SoFAS
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