US Panel Advises More Whole Grains

Aug 20, 2004 12:45 PM EDT

A recent report, issued by the advisory panel changing the Dietary Guidelines for Americans, emphasizes whole grains as an important part of a balanced and healthy diet.

Trends discouraged

According to the report, consumers should concentrate on replacing refined grains in their diet with whole grains—at least three servings a day.

The report also recommends lowfat milk products and advises people to eat two servings of fish a week. Fish rich in omega-3 fatty acids are specifically recommended to reduce heart disease risk.

Also, the panel continued to recommend that weight loss and weight maintenance be sustained through caloric control rather than more fashionable methods, such as trendy diets and dangerous supplements, such as ephedra. The experts suggest that people should simply make sure the number of calories they consume does not exceed the number of calories they expend.

Carb consumption increased

The panel also advised that Americans keep consumption of trans-fatty acids below 1% of total daily calories, while maintaining past recommendations of consumption of saturated fat below 10% of calories and of cholesterol below 300 mg a day. New additions to daily intakes are: a raise in total recommended fat intake, from 20% to 35%, and in healthy carbohydrate consumption, from 45% to 65%.

As a side note, the report advised that people exercise at least 30 minutes a day to maintain heart health and ideal body weight.


1. New York Times online