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General interest items edited by Janice Flahiff

Lacto-Ovo and Vegan Information Included in USDA Dietary Guidelines

Three weeks ago my husband and I started using  USDA’s Supertracker in an effort to make changes to our eating and exercise patterns.
Our goal is to reach and maintain a  healthy weight range and reap the benefits of a good exercise program.
More on this in a later blog entry.

A three week report showed I was deficient in several nutrients. I went to the 2010 USDA Dietary Guidelines to look up foods that are highest in these nutrients (including potassium and choline).While going through the appendix I came across

  • Appendix 8- Lacto-Ovo Vegetarian Adaption of the USDA Food Patterns (p. 81 of the Guideline)
  • Appendix 9 – Vegan Adaption of the USDA Food Patterns (p. 82 of the Guideline)

The USDA Guidelines state “[t]hese vegetarian variations represent healthy eating patterns, but rely on fortified foods for some nutrients. In the vegan patterns especially, fortified foods provide much of the calcium and vitamin B12, and either fortified foods or supplements should be selected to provide adequate intake of these nutrients. ”

I am the first to admit I am not a nutritionist or expert in vegetarianism. So I would not be surprised if folks knowledgable in these areas would take issue with the USDA approach on fortified foods and/or the information in the appendix.
Still, this is giving me pause to at least consider  vegan “substitutes” for some meat and dairy.
And it is heartening that the USDA is starting to be a bit more inclusive in the guidelines, no matter what the intentions are.

On a related note, Planning Has Begun for the Dietary Guidelines for Americans, 2015.
According to the USDA announcement

The Departments of Health and Human Services and Agriculture are pleased to announce their intent to establish the 2015 Dietary Guidelines Advisory Committee (DGAC) and to invite nominations for the DGAC. Nominations will be accepted until 6:00 pm EST, on Monday, November 26, 2012 to or via fax or postal mail as described in the Federal Register notice.

The DGAC is expected to convene five meetings, with the intent of the first in April 2013. The Committee’s recommendations and rationale will serve as a basis for the eighth edition of the Dietary Guidelines for Americans. To learn more and submit nominations, see the Federal Register notice.

Related Article

Is a Vegetarian Diet the Future of Food? by  on October 18, 2012
The evidence points to environmental costs and the effects of factory farming.

November 14, 2012 - Posted by | Nutrition | , , , ,

1 Comment »

  1. […] Lacto-Ovo and Vegan Information Included in USDA Dietary Guidelines ( […]

    Pingback by The Vegetarian Female | Blog | November 15, 2013 | Reply

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