A fresh debate on nutritional guidelines leads to the discovery of an old food wheel that listed butter as a recommended food group when the country was in need of bigger soldiers for war
What's on the table, long the concern of homemakers, hungry breadwinners, and fussy kids, has surfaced as a heated topic for public discourse. Americans are getting fatter by most any measure -- expanding waistlines, body mass index, or the incidence of obesity-associated illnesses like type II diabetes. The CDC indicates that a third of U.S. adults are obese. The gains are rapid, according to a Robert Wood Johnson Foundation analysis. Last summer, Bloomberg News reported that, if unchecked, by 2030 the weight problem might add $66 billion to annual health care expenses in the U.S. Meanwhile, obesity spreads worldwide.
In January, 2011 the USDA and HSS jointly announced the latest issue of Dietary Guidelines For Americans. The 7th edition offers a new emphasis on physical activity, and recommends that most people reduce their caloric intake. The New York Times ran a summary with the headline, "Government's Dietary Advice: Eat Less." A few months later, the USDA linked a new image, MyPlate, to the guidelines. The modern and modular four-part dish, with designated space for fruits, vegetables, grains, and protein, is accompanied by a serving of dairy on the side. In October, the New England Journal of Medicine published a perspective, "The 2010 Dietary Guidelines -- The Best Recipe for Health?"