13 August 2004

Rising Obesity Rates Force Its Revision

Because of rising obesity rates, the American food pyramid is getting a major revision.

The 13-member federal advisory panel task to review and revise the Dietary Guidelines for Americans held its final meeting yesterday in Washington. It seeks to propose changes in its current nutrition recommendations. The San Francisco Chronicle reports that when the food pyramid was issued in 1992, "no state reported obesity rates above 20 percent." But ten years later, 29 states had obesity rates of at least 20 percent. The US Department of Agriculture admits that while almost 80 percent of Americans recognize the pyramid, only 2 to 4 percent eat according to it. [San Francisco Chronicle]

Among the NEW recommendations are:
  • Eat whole grain products rather than refined grains to reduce risks of heart disease and other conditions.

  • Fruit and vegetable servings would be expanded to 5 to 13, from the current 5 to 9 daily servings.

  • Avoid trans fats, and reduce total daily salt to 2,300 milligrams. If you do not know what trans fats are, click here and here.

  • Plan and control daily caloric intake. If you want tips, see this menu planner, and plan your meals based on your daily energy expenditures.

  • People should engage in at least 30 minutes of moderate activity on most days and to possibly double that if they want to lose weight.
There is almost nothing new in these recommendations. I think I have blogged about some of these in the past few months. If we just eat the right food items and exercise moderately each day, getting overweight can be minimized.

I'm pretty sure the nutrition guys here will follow the same guidelines implemented by their US counterparts. Overweight and obesity problems are no longer adult problems. They are also affecting most children and adolescents.

Next time you go to KFC where they have unlimited gravy, or feast on McDo fries, think about what I posted today, and decide what you really want for your body.

0 reactions: