The USDA’s webcast last week presented the 2010 Dietary Guidelines for Americans and, on the whole, rang familiar alarm bells about fighting obesity by reducing calorie intake and increasing physical activity. The report states that the popular “Food Pyramid” consumption guide showing what proportions of which food groups should be eaten will be updated this year to reflect the new guidelines. The USDA summarized its findings and issued this advice:
»Enjoy your food, but eat less.
» Make half your plate fruits and vegetables.
» Switch to fat-free or low-fat (1 percent) milk.
» Compare sodium in foods like soup, bread and frozen meals — and choose the foods with lower numbers.
Another aspect of the guidelines is that Americans need to decrease sodium consumption. That’s right: the beloved salt. The USDA recommends 2,300 milligrams of salt per day for the average healthy adult and 1,500 milligrams per day for age 51 or older, African Americans and people with high blood pressure, diabetes or chronic kidney disease.