[Go Canada go]
I was writing another blog, on another matter, when someone sent me an email containing a petition signed by over two hundred Canadian doctors. You can read more about it here https://www.facebook.com/photo.php?fbid=10103115611237481&set=a.10103115599810381.1073741857.58002911&type=3&theater
Re: Canada’s Food Guide Consultation
From: Group of concerned Canadian Physicians and Allied Health Care providers
For the past 35+ years, Canadians have been urged to follow the Canadian Dietary Guidelines. During this time, there has been a sharp increase in nutrition-related diseases, particularly obesity and diabetes.
We are especially concerned with the dramatic increase in the rates of childhood obesity and diabetes. In 1980, 15% of Canadian school-aged children were overweight or obese. Remarkably, this number more than doubled to 31% in 2011; 12% of children met the criteria for obesity in the same reporting period. This has resulted in a population with a high burden of disease, causing both individual suffering, and resulting in health care systems which are approaching their financial breaking points. The guidelines have not been based on the best and most current science, and significant change is needed.
From the Report of the Standing Senate Committee on Social Affairs on Obesity in Canada, “Canada’s dated food guide is no longer effective in providing nutritional guidance to Canadians. Fruit juice, for instance, is presented as a healthy item when it is little more than a soft drink without the bubbles”
They have put together a list of things that they believe should happen
Points for Change
The Canadian Dietary Guidelines should:
- Clearly communicate to the public and health-care professionals that the low-fat diet is no longer supported, and can worsen heart-disease risk factors
- Be created without influence from the food industry
- Eliminate caps on saturated fats
- Be nutritionally sufficient, and those nutrients should come from real foods, not from artificially fortified refined grains
- Promote low-carb diets as at least one safe and effective intervention for people struggling with obesity, diabetes, and heart disease
- Offer a true range of diets that respond to the diverse nutritional needs of our population
- De-emphasize the role of aerobic exercise in controlling weight
- Recognize the controversy on salt and cease the blanket “lower is better” recommendation
- Stop using any language suggesting that sustainable weight control can simply be managed by creating a caloric deficit
- Cease its advice to replace saturated fats with polyunsaturated vegetable oils to prevent cardiovascular disease
- Stop steering people away from nutritious whole foods, such as whole-fat dairy and regular red meat
- Include a cap on added sugar, in accordance with the updated WHO guidelines, ideally no greater than 5% of total calories
- Be based on a complete, comprehensive review of the most rigorous (randomized, controlled clinical trial) data available; on subjects for which this more rigorous data is not available, the Guidelines should remain silent.
Oh, happy days. My sense of what is now happening is that the momentum against the very stupid and damaging nutritional guidelines that have dominated the Western World for the last forty years is reaching breaking point. This group even managed to throw ‘restricting salt intake’ into the dustbin. Oh, happy days.
If this carries on, I will have nothing left to blog about soon. Suits me.