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The Great Pyramid

AA2080 Everyone’s obese and we need to eat less or we will all die. I didn’t actually scrutinize the new USDA dietary guidelines, but I’m pretty sure that’s the gist. Also, did you know that in China they have a food pagoda instead of a pyramid?

As the American public ignores the recommendations as they do every five years, the PR-savvy see this as the perfect opportunity to tout brands and organizations that fit into this new rubric–no matter how tenuous the connection.

Here is a random sampling of who’s promoting themselves as USDA dietary guideline-friendly since the news was announced Monday:

The Peanut Institute: "A healthy eating pattern … emphasizes nutrient-dense foods – vegetables, fruits, whole grains, fat-free or low-fat milk products, seafood, lean meats and poultry, eggs, beans and peas, and nuts and seeds."

The United States Potato Board: "Get more potassium in your diet.  Food sources of potassium include potatoes, cantaloupe, bananas, beans and yogurt."

Slade Gorton & Co.: "The new federal guidelines will increase demand for seafood as the report points out in no uncertain terms the nutritional and health benefits of consuming more fish as part of a regular diet."

National Dairy Council: "Overall, the new Guidelines emphasizes a total diet approach, urging Americans to reduce calories and watch portion sizes; make more nutrient-rich choices, such as fruits, vegetables, whole grains and low-fat or fat-free milk and milk products; and move more."

ConAgra Foods: "We consider our broad portfolio of health and wellness brands, such as Healthy Choice, Hunt’s® and Orville Redenbacher’s® SmartPop! ®, to be a competitive advantage for ConAgra Foods and will continue focusing on delivering the great-tasting, nutritious foods consumers want."

Cargill: "Helping customers leverage regulatory requirements and shifting consumer preferences, Cargill has introduced a range of ingredients to help reduce calories, saturated fat and sodium." These include: Truvia™, CitriTex® GSG 71, SaltWise®, Premier™ potassium chloride and Premier™ light salt, Alberger®, Clear Valley® omega-3 oil and Clear Valley™ omega-3 shortening, Honeysuckle White®, CoroWise™, Oliggo-Fiber®, Barliv™, ActiStar®, GrainWise®, WheatSelect® , MaizeWise®, Sterling Silver®, Sunny Fresh®

Soyfoods Association of North America: "The recommendations include increasing the intake of soy products and fortified soy beverages.  Vegetarian and vegan meal patterns, that include soyfoods, also make their Dietary Guidelines debut as adaptations to the USDA Food Patterns."

The Quaker Oats Company: "The Dietary Guidelines state, 'consume at least half of all grains as whole grains.'"

Welch's: "Americans are in luck thanks to Welch's 100% Grape Juice, which is made with over 20 Concord grapes per 4-ounce glass and provides one serving (or 1/2 cup) of fruit and beneficial nutrients, helping consumers to meet daily fruit recommendations and nutrition goals while also meeting their desires for delicious taste and refreshment."

The National Pork Board: "Pork, in particular, is a lean, low-calorie, nutrient-rich protein which can help with weight control. In fact, recent studies show eating lean meats such as pork can lead to weight loss by reducing hunger sensations, helping people feel full and preserving lean muscle mass."

National Fisheries Institute: "The Dietary Guidelines specifically clear up persistent consumer confusion by saying pregnant and breastfeeding women should eat at least 8 and up to 12 ounces (two to three servings) of seafood each week to boost babies' brain and eye development."

National Cattlemen’s Beef Association: "The good news is the nutrient-rich beef already enjoyed by more than 95 percent of Americans will help them meet these new Guidelines. A 3 oz serving of lean beef provides 10 nutrients your body needs such as protein, iron, zinc and B-vitamins for an average of 154 calories."

Boar's Head: "At Boar's Head, we recognize the important role sodium plays in one's diet and we support the USDA's recommendation for reduced sodium intake…That's why we offer an extensive portfolio of great tasting lower sodium deli meats and cheeses."

Campbell Soup Company: "Studies show drinking V8® 100% vegetable juice may be a simple way for people to increase their vegetable intake and may help them manage their weight — two areas of concern outlined in the newly released 2010 U.S. Dietary Guidelines for Americans."

General Mills: "2010 Dietary Guidelines for Americans Recommends Increasing Daily Vegetable Intake; Green Giant Is a Good Pick Offering Variety and Convenience"

Weight Watchers International, Inc.: "In line with the philosophy that drove the new Dietary Guidelines, Weight Watchers developed its new PointsPlus program with the newest nutrition science in mind, including and consistent with the science supporting the new Dietary Guidelines for Americans."

Redneck food pyramid apron from LA Imprints


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