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The Washington Post reports that "the committee assembled to help formulate the 2020 Dietary Guidelines for Americans is taking aim at sugar-sweetened beverages and added sugars … The committee, a group of 20 doctors, registered dietitians and public health experts, recommends reducing added sugars to 6 percent of daily calories, from 10 percent.

"The previous Dietary Guidelines took a major step forward in 2015 by suggesting added sugars be limited to 10 percent of total daily calories, but leading health organizations, supported by science, have long argued that lower limits would better protect health."

In addition, the story says, "for the first time, the committee made recommendations for children up to 2 years old, suggesting a ban on sugar-sweetened beverages. The experts argued that calories from sugar-sweetened beverages may displace those from nutritious foods and increase the risk of the child becoming overweight."

The Post notes that the committee's recommendations are designed to guide "the Department of Health and Human Services and the Agriculture Department in determining the 2020 Dietary Guidelines for Americans, which help shape federally funded food assistance programs and the contents of school lunches, how foods are labeled and what our doctors exhort us to avoid or embrace.

"With half of American adults suffering from one or more preventable, chronic diseases and about two-thirds of U.S. adults overweight or obese, the committee’s recommendations come at a critical time."

KC's View:

And the problem, of course, is that people with those chronic diseases are more susceptible to catching the Covid-19 coronavirus and suffering serious problems as a result.

The story also makes clear, as I understand it, that while these may be the committee's recommendations, that doesn't mean that food industry lobbyists won't work overtime to water them down, and that HHS and USDA won't be accommodating to the industry pressure and less accepting of the science-based recommendations than some would want them to be.

Which to me just sounds like a deeply cynical reading of the situation.