With comments due to the Dietary Guidelines Advisory Committee (DGA) May 8 on its recent recommendations, special interest groups are scrambling to have their voices heard. And today, for the first time, the plant-based food business came together to submit comments on behalf of 21 signatories. The letter supports the committee’s findings that a diet higher in plant-based foods and lower in calories and animal-based foods is healthier for people and the environment.
“In addition to supporting this overall dietary pattern, we wish to comment specifically on the need to emphasize eating less meat and more plants, on the importance of plant proteins, and on the need to include more specific messages about which foods to avoid or minimize, as well as which foods to emphasize,” the group states in its letter.
To that end, the group highlights a plant-based diet’s ability to address the nation’s nutrient deficit problem, enrich the American diet with monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fats — and calls out as unhealthy specific foods rich in saturated fats such as meats, eggs, and dairy — and enhance overall intake of nutrient-rich plant protein. The letter also applauds the committee’s findings that a healthy diet and sustainable food system go hand-in-hand.
One recommendation stressed over and over in the letter is a call for clarity in the committee’s recommendations. For example, while the businesses support the DGA’s recommendation that consumers lower their intake of red and processed meats, they recommend that DGA take it one step further and name specific products that fall into this category like ham, bacon, roast beef, hamburgers, steak, etc. This, the group says, will help consumers follow the recommendations when shopping for food.
For more information and to read the letter, visit www.lessmeatmoreplants.com.