Federal Government Embraces an Anti-Cancer Diet

The mission of the Integrative Medicine Program is to optimize health, quality of life and clinical outcomes through integrative medicine education and research-driven clinical care. – MD Anderson Cancer Center

More than two thirds of adults and one third of children are obese or overweight in the United States. Mounting evidence links excess body weight with an increased risk for many types of cancer. In fact, the American Institute for Cancer Research suggests that over a third of the most common cancers could be prevented if Americans maintained a healthy diet, increased their level of physical activity, and stayed lean. Now the federal government has released new dietary guidelines that echo the recommendations of many cancer experts that may help to reduce this risk.

The U.S Department of Agriculture (USDA) and the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS) outline the guidelines in their latest edition of the Dietary Guidelines for Americans 2010. The guidelines are published every five years and are designed to help promote health, prevent chronic diseases, and reduce the risk of becoming overweight or obese. The new recommendations are seen as a major step by federal regulators to recognize the obesity crisis and provide more information on maintaining appropriate calorie balance, the importance of consuming nutrient-dense foods, and increasing physical activity.

Key recommendations include: – Prevent and/or reduce overweight and obesity through improved eating and physical activity behaviors. For people who are overweight or obese, this will mean consuming fewer calories from foods and beverages (estimated caloric intake: Female, moderate activity, 51 and older — 1800; Male, moderate activity, 51 and older — 2300). – Increase vegetable and fruit intake, especially dark-green and red and orange vegetables and beans and peas. – Consume at least half of all grains as whole grains. Increase whole-grain intake by replacing refined grains with whole grains. continue reading on page 2…

- Increase the amount and variety of seafood consumed by choosing seafood in place of some meat and poultry. – Choose a variety of protein foods, which include seafood, lean meat and poultry, eggs, beans and peas, soy products, and unsalted nuts and seeds. – Use oils to replace solid fats where possible. – Choose foods that provide more potassium, dietary fiber, calcium, and vitamin D, which are nutrients of concern in American diets. These foods include vegetables, fruits, whole grains, and milk and milk products. – Reduce daily sodium intake to less than 2,300 milligrams (mg) (1 teaspoon) and further reduce intake to 1,500 mg (1/3 teaspoon) among persons who are 51 and older and those of any age who are African American or have hypertension, diabetes, or chronic kidney disease. – Reduce the intake of calories from solid fats and sugars. – Limit the consumption of foods that contain refined grains, especially refined grain foods that contain solid fats, added sugars, and sodium.

- Keep trans fatty acid consumption as low as possible by limiting foods that contain synthetic sources of trans fats, such as partially hydrogenated oils, and limiting solid fats. – If alcohol is consumed, it should be consumed in moderation–up to one drink per day for women and two drinks per day for men.

To follow these guidelines, it will mean paying close attention to what and how much we eat. This is challenging when eating in restaurants, which often serve single portions that could easily serve two people under the current guidelines, or eating processed foods. Whenever possible, cook fresh food at home with family and friends in order to achieve a healthy, balanced anti- cancer diet.

Please visit www.cnpp.usda.gov/Dietaryguidelines.htm for more detailed breakdown of these new guidelines. You can also reference our calendar to sign up for the Integrative Medicine Center class, Nutrition for Individuals Touched by Cancer, by calling 713-794-4700.

© 2011 Copyright   Allison Stuart Kaplan  www.Askinyourface.com LLC

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