A few days ago, there was an article in the Arizona Republic. The headline caught my eye. It said FDA to revise nutrition label.
As I was reading this article, I was happily surprised with the changes they were suggesting. They did not give concrete changes, but offered some spots that should have changes.
One of the changes is the serving size -- portion. Some of the labels or packaging is misleading. The consumers of these products assume the container is 1 serving when in reality it is 2 or 3 servings.
Another change proposed is to give more emphases on the calories in the product. With the proposed changes, the food manufactures will be redesigning the packaging their products come in.
The FDA (Food and Drug Administration) has been working on changing the nutritional box since 2003. The nutritional labels were first put on food packages back in 1992. As you can see it takes a long time for the FDA to introduce or make changes. We probably will not see any of the changes for at least a year.
For the last 6 months, I have been redesigning the nutritional box and designing a food nutrition value program for my website.
I am very excited about these programs. They are very simple to use and understand. It will contain nutritional values that the USDA has for food values. I also had to go outside the USDA for a few of the values, because they do not have the values and do not plan to add these foods to their list in the future. I was told I could request they look into adding these foods, but it did not seem very promising. I called the associations that represented those foods for the accurate valves and included them in my programs.
A study group had a chance to use these programs and was very surprised at the ease of use.
I am hoping to have them installed by the end of the month. A few glitches still need to be worked out to have the programs to run smoothly.
The USDA started to recommend dietary guidelines as early as 1894. Vitamins and minerals had not been discovered yet. It was not until President Franklin Roosevelt in 1941 released the first set of Recommended Dietary Allowances (RDA). A lot of changes and modifications have been made since the first dietary guideline.
In 1943 it was called the Basic Seven food guide. It had a major share of the RDA's, but only a portion of it contained calories.
The seven food groups were:
Leafy, green, and yellow vegetables Citrus fruit, tomatoes, raw cabbage Potatoes and other vegetables & fruit Milk, cheese, ice cream (Yes it used to be a food group) Meat, poultry, fish, eggs, dried peas, beans Bread, flour cereals Butter and fortified margarine
Wartime brought a change to the Basic Seven, it included servings per food group.
Ten years later in 1956 a new guideline was released called Basic Four. It recommended a minimum number of foods from each group.
The four food groups were:
Milk Meat Fruit and vegetables Grain products
This guideline stayed in used for the next two decades.
In 1977 the guidelines shifted from getting adequate nutrients to not having excessive amount of food linked to chronic diseases.
The Basic Four was altered in 1979 to include one more group -- Fats, sweets and alcoholic beverages.
Dietary Guidelines in 1980 took the USDA and American National Red Cross to make the next one called the Food Wheel. This wheel contained six sections and each had how many servings per day to eat.
Since 1980 dietary guidelines are by law to be revised every 5 years.
It was not until 1992 that the first pyramid was introduced. The top of the pyramid would be the least amount of consumption and the bottom of the pyramid would be where you would have the most consumption of the food groups. It still contained the six groups.
The six food groups were:
Bread, cereal, rice & pasta group on the bottom Fruit group and Vegetable group were on the same level. Milk, yogurt & cheese group and meat, poultry, fish, dry beans, eggs & nuts group were on the same level. Fat, oils & sweets on the top of the pyramid labeled USE SPARINGLY
A law went into effect in mid 1994 mandating the use of the nutritional facts label.
The pyramid took a slight change in 2005 to add a look and concept of physical activity. It also now had vertical lines instead of horizontal lines for the food groups.
2011 the new guideline came out called My Plate. It is a plate that is separated into four different categories and sizes. Then outside the plate is a circle with milk in it.
The four food groups are:
Vegetables -- being the biggest Grains -- next biggest Fruits Protein Milk -- is by itself
I went on to see all the information the USDA has on this new guideline. I know why there is so much debate on the My Plate guideline. It does not tell you how big your plate should be. There is no reference on how many calories, overall portion size. There is portion size of each food group in reference to the plate. Looking at this for me would be a guess on how many calories I am consuming. I think the concept is great, but I think they did not go far enough with it.
The simple truth is this. You need to consume fewer calories in a day then the calories your body uses and burns as fuel. Calories Burned > Calories Consumed
The My Plate guideline does not include mention of physical activity. In this research,
I came up other guidelines I am researching. I will let you know what I have discovered.
How many times have you said, "I wish I could do that." Or maybe you say, "I wish I could lose this weight." "I wish I was as skinny as she is." "I wish I could eat everything she does."
Do you put yourself and your dreams last?
For many overweight people they put their self-last. They do not take the time to take care of their self properly. I know I always took care of my children needs and wants way before I took care of any of mine needs. I would take care of myself late at night when everyone else was sleeping. That was when I would eat and watch TV. I would not even know how much I was eating. I would eat right out of the bag. When I did this I would zone out, I would be able to breathe.
I look back and ask myself, "was that really taking care of myself?"
I would not think of the consequences while I was eating. The guilt, the shame and the - what the heck did I do, comes in after.
I had the "Wish" problem. I wished I had control over my eating issues. I wished I were an active part of my family's life. I wished I was not sitting on the sidelines.
There is no easy way out of this problem. There is no magic pill, no special potion, or lotion. It comes down to not wanting to live your life being overweight, obese anymore. It really comes down to wanting to live life.
This is the hardest thing I have ever done in my life. It is much easier to eat whatever you want and not worry. That is when the "Wishing" starts.
Here is a trick. Before you eat something that is not on your eating plan, say to yourself "Is it worth it." What this does is make you think twice about what you are going to do. If you really want it and it this does not stop you from eating it, then measure out a portion. When you are in this frame of mind, you will keep eating until the bag is gone. If you want it in the original bag -- some people have to have it that way. Then put the rest in another bag out of your site.
We have all heard that people eat when they feel their rest of their life is out of control. Take control back of your life, one thing at a time. Small changes do add up to big changes.
For today, make one change. A change in the way you do something. Change something that will help you get your life in more control and in less chaos.
Clean out your pantry so all the healthy items at your eye level. Then put the not so healthy stuff to where it is difficult to get that item. Better yet, get rid of the unhealthy stuff. It is a lot harder to get in your car or walk to the store to get it then it is to reach in a pantry.