Fueling Wellness: What You Need to Know About the FDA’S Dietary Guidelines

Capital Health Plan joins the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) in recognizing March as National Nutrition Month! The FDA outlined its initiative for this year’s recognition to include sodium reduction, maternal and infant nutrition, labeling, and consumer education.

Every five years the FDA issues a new edition of its Dietary Guidelines for Americans, based on scientific evidence, to benefit the general U.S. population. The current edition, which will be updated in two years, includes these four overarching guidelines:

  1. Follow a healthy dietary pattern at every life stage.

  2. Customize and enjoy nutrient-dense food and beverage choices to reflect personal preferences, cultural traditions, and budgetary considerations.

  3. Focus on meeting food group needs with nutrient-dense foods and beverages; and stay within calorie limits.

  4. Limit foods and beverages higher in added sugars, saturated fat, and sodium, and limit alcoholic beverages.

The FDA offers specific guidance, including some specific numerical recommendations. For everyone age 2 and older, limit added sugars to less than 10% of total calories per day (avoid them altogether in infants) and limit saturated fat to less than 10% of calories. Adults should limit sodium intake to less than 2300 mg per day, and less for children younger than 14. Limit alcoholic beverages to two drinks per day for men and one drink per day for women.

Other recommendations from the FDA to help you maintain a healthy nutritional lifestyle include:

  1. Recognize that it’s never too early or late to eat healthy.

  2. “Make Every Bite Count’ by choosing healthy, nutritious food and beverages.

  3. 85% of food should be rich in nutrients, leaving only 15% for extra calories from sugar, alcohol, and saturated fat.

  4. Focus on the whole diet over time, not an individual food, meal, or occasion.

  5. The Healthy Eating Index measures how closely individuals follow the guidelines. A high index improves health outcomes.

  6. Follow three key dietary principles:

    • Meet nutritional needs by choosing a variety of options from each food group.

    • Pay attention to portion sizes.

    • Make it your own by selecting healthy foods, beverages, meals, and snacks specific to your needs and preferences.

Learn more at https://www.dietaryguidelines.gov and https://www.fda.gov/food/consumers/national-nutrition-month and improve your health with nutrition!

Sourced By: Healthwise
Reviewed By: Capital Health Plan Physicians Group
Posted: March 1, 2024

2024-03-01 16:30:00