The United States Dietary Guideline Advisory Committee released new dietary guidelines for the Mediterranean diet in their 2015 Scientific Report, suggesting Americans should follow the Mediterranean dietary model for better health.
The 2015 DGAC report is designed to provide Americans with the best dietary recommendations from 14 leading experts in nutrition. Recommendations come from the most recent research on nutrition, providing guidelines for federal policy, nutrition programs, businesses and hospitals.
The report, which is prepared for the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services and the Department of Agriculture, suggests in order to receive optimal nutrition, prevent disease and illness and maintain a healthy weight, people should follow a collaboration of three dietary patterns: the Healthy U.S. dietary pattern, the Healthy Vegetarian dietary pattern and the Healthy Mediterranean dietary pattern.
These models were designed by experts based on their staples and recommended intakes. Research shows that eating high quantities of vegetables and fruits, whole grains, legumes, nuts, low or nonfat dairy and seafood constitute a healthy diet.
All the recommended foods are staples in the Mediterranean diet, which shares common elements with the other two dietary patterns.
The DGAC also released a chart outlining the recommended daily intake of each food group within all three dietary models. Intakes of these foods are based on caloric intake.
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In the Healthy Mediterranean dietary plan, the DGAC says the normal adult should be eating two and a half to three cups of fruit a day and two and a half to three and a half cups of vegetables. Red and orange vegetables topped the charts with a weekly recommendation of five and a half to six cups. Dark greens and legumes are recommended for less consumption with only one and a half to two cups per week.
The DGAC also recommends adults following the Mediterranean diet eat six to eight ounces of grains a day, while protein, which includes meat, soy, seafood, nuts, seeds and eggs, should be consumed at a rate of six to seven and a half ounces per day. Dairy should be limited to a daily two cups, and oil intake should be between 22 and 31 grams a day.
The DGAC Scientific Report is in its viewing stage and is accepting written comments from the public until May 8.