Dear Physicians Committee supporter,
The U.S. Department of Agriculture’s MyPlate is making Americans sick. It should help Americans stay healthy. Instead, it overemphasizes protein and encourages consumption of dairy products that fuel the nation’s diet-related disease epidemics.
This morning, the Physicians Committee filed a legal petition that asks the USDA to update MyPlate by:
- Ditching the Dairy Group
Scientific evidence shows that dairy products offer little if any protection for bone health and increase the risk of breast, ovarian, and prostate cancers, cardiovascular disease, Parkinson’s disease, Alzheimer’s disease, and early death. Dairy products also harm up to 50 million Americans who suffer from lactose intolerance. Although calcium is an essential nutrient, it is available from many other more healthful foods, such as beans, green leafy vegetables, tofu products, breads, and cereals.
- Swapping the Protein Portion for Legumes
The average American actually consumes too much protein, and most of it comes from animal products that promote diseases like diabetes, cancer, and heart disease. The USDA’s own 2015-2020 Dietary Guidelines for Americans even advise that teen boys and adult men "need to reduce overall intake of protein foods by decreasing intakes of meats, poultry, and eggs and increasing amounts of vegetables..." The Guidelines also say that “legumes are excellent sources of protein” but that intakes of legumes are below recommendations.
Please help us tell the USDA that MyPlate should focus only on vegetables, fruits, grains, and legumes — the four food groups that provide the nutrients necessary for a healthful diet that prevents disease.
Susan Levin, M.S., R.D., C.S.S.D.
Director of Nutrition Education