Childhood obesity is a serious concern worldwide and the US government is all set to take serious action against it. The new dietary guidelines for infants and children released by the US Department of Agriculture, Health and Human Service have restricted cake and candy for children below 2 years of age. According to them, young children should only be fed on breastmilk or formula milk for six months. And children from six months to two years of age should not be given any added sugar in any form.
The nutritionists say that giving children from such a young age is harmful to their health. although childhood obesity levels are increasing every day it is never too late to initiate and adopt a good habit.
These dietary guidelines have focused on two recommendations which are suggested by the researchers. These two recommendations include holding a limit on added sugar which should be less than 6% of the total calories and putting a limit on alcohol intake for men, making it one drink/day only.
The Agriculture Department and the Department of Health and Human Services issues new dietary guidelines for children, infants, and adults every five years. This information is used to set new standards for the children in school and related programs.
The guidelines say that infants should not be given anything other than breastmilk. In case it is not available, the parents should give them iron-fortified special formula milk for infants during the first year of their life. After consulting with their doctor, these infants can also be given vitamin D supplements during the first year.
After six months, they can be fed with other foods preferably organic and healthy food. It may also include allergenic food introduced slowly, as it will help determine if they have any allergy to a food source.
The previous dietary guidelines suggested that pregnant and breastfeeding mothers have to take care of their diet. During pregnancy, these women need at least 8 ounces of seafood every week and they can eat anything that they like. It is better to pick low mercury fish that doesn’t affect the baby’s brain development.
In addition to this, pregnant women should never consume alcohol and hold their intake of caffeine. A moderate amount of caffeine is safe but if they have a habit of taking two cups of coffee or more in routine, they should talk to their doctor and set their caffeine values per day.
The scientific advisors to the government suggested putting a limit of one alcoholic drink per day in men. This one drink is 12 ounce can or a 5-ounce glass. But the new guidelines have ignored it completely saying that the men can drink up to two drinks daily.
Most people have no accurate nutritional guide which is why the risks for their health increase every year. The new dietary advice for children and adults is not very much different from the last instructions but cutting sugar, fats, and alcohol, in general, has high benefits for health.