New Dietary Guidelines Released, Science Gets Mugged

I suppose that it would be a bit much to ask for a government committee to follow some sort of scientific principle in making regulatory guidelines for the country. Apparently, the DGAC thought that sacrificing science for polemics against foods that it doesn't like was the way to go.

Two cases in point - a recommendation to go to a 'plant-based' diet that has as a major motivating factor environmental sustainability. Since the primary purpose is for a healthy population, this is a substantial overreach and smacks of pandering to anti-meat groups, as does the restriction on saturated fats, despite the recent evidence that saturated fats are more healthy than previously thought.

Sodium is also under fire. The current federal guidelines (1500 to 2300 mg) appear too low for proper health in most individuals. The exception would be those that already have high blood pressure. A recent study demonstrated that 3000-6000 mg was the sweet spot for optimum health.

How did they handle the new studies on salt? By ignoring them:

The DGAC considered the conclusions reached by the IOM and NHLBI related to dietary sodium intake and risk of CVD, and determined that the findings from the four new studies identified in the updated search did not warrant changes to the conclusion statements.

That's not science.

The whole DGAC report is at

It's 571 pages so I haven't read it all. Chapter Six is fun. I'm betting Chapter Five, devoted to sustainability has some gems in it, too.