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Thirteen nutrition experts making up the US Dietary Guidelines Advisory Committee have issued a draft report suggesting changes in the nutrition recommendations made by the government. The main advice, according to the Wall Street Journal: “People should consume more vegetables and whole grains, and less fatty meats, salt and sugar.”

The report goes on, “Among the recommendations: Americans should consume no more than 1,500 milligrams a day of salt. Current guidelines recommend a maximum of 2,300 mg, equivalent to one teaspoon of salt, for the general population, and 1,500 milligrams for at-risk adults, such as those with high blood pressure. The panel recommended 1,500 mg for everyone.

The report also said children should be discouraged from drinking sugar-sweetened beverages and get more physical exercise and people generally should limit saturated fats to less than 7% of overall calorie intake.”

The US Congress mandates that the government’s nutrition recommendations be updated every five years. The committee’s suggestions are designed to be factored into whatever final plan is developed later this year by the US Department of Agriculture (USDA) and the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS).
KC's View:
I know that scientists and experts need to use calculations like “1,500 milligrams a day of salt,” but it always seems to me that these kinds of numbers are lost on most Americans, who aren’t doing the math and keeping track from meal to meal and day to day.

I’m not exactly sure what the solution is, but it seems to me that a more holistic approach needs to be taken, one that stresses moderation and education, that includes the need for exercise as a counter-weight, and that doesn’t demonize the notion of indulgence from time to time. The approach needs to be cultural, not legislative, and it has to start with parents, not elected officials.