Have your say in revising Canada’s Food Guide

Canada’s Food Guide is being re-vamped and this your opportunity to help steer the future around health and wellness recommendations when it comes to our fine foods – including Canadian Beef.

What’s Happening?

Canada’s Food Guide is under review right now by Health Canada with the goal of having a revised Guide by 2018. In the spirit of full transparency, there is a consultation that is open to concerned citizens.

Some Background on The Food Guide:

Canada’s Food Guide was first released in 1942 with the intension providing practical healthy eating recommendations to help individuals make informed food choices. It has been revised seven times, with the most recent release in 2007 (Eating Well with Canada’s Food Guide). A revision to the Food Guide is part of Health Canada’s Healthy Eating Strategy , launched Oct 2016. The intentions of revising Canada’s Food Guide is to address the changing food environment.

Why You Should Be Involved:

The Food Guide is well intentioned and has some progressive and insightful recommendations for sure. However, there are also some recommendations that seem misguided without being fully grounded in the facts.

Of Significance:

  • A ‘protein food category’ is being proposed rather than Meat & Alternates, and Dairy food groups. Since we make food choices based on food purchase not nutrient purchase, this could be confusing. Having a Protein group also insinuates that all protein sources are of equal benefit and that all the foods in this group are rich in protein. This is just the wrong information. Plant-protein sources are not complete proteins and calorie for calorie, they are not as rich in protein as animal sources of protein.
  • There is a call to action to reduce the intake of red meat. For women and teen girls who are under-consuming meat as a rule, this is concerning as it puts these groups at risk for deficiency in iron, zinc and B12 – as well as quality protein.
  • There is a recommendation to replace saturated fat with unsaturated fat to help reduce the risk of cardiovascular disease and type 2 diabetes. This seems to be out of step with the guiding principles of Heart and Stroke association, who after years of studying the situation have modified their recommendations to the following: “If Canadians eat a healthy, balanced diet and appropriate portions, saturated fat intake should not be an issue.”
  • There is a recommendation to encourage the public to eat sustainably by choosing food produced by systems that have reduced environmental impacts. Should the environment even be a consideration in the Food Guide? Does this contribute to helping us eat better? Perhaps the better way to go would be to encourage us all to take charge of our actions – by reducing food waste and not over-eating. The topic of sustainable food production is very complex and to date, there is no black and white answer on what foods are more sustainable to grow and raise.

Here’s how to enter in your own personal contribution to the Food Guide. DEADLINE IS AUGUST 14

  1. Go to this link: https://www.foodguideconsultation.ca/
  2. CLICK ON THE GREEN BOX: Register here.
  3. Registered your Profile. To continue to fill in the survey, click on the Box that identifies that you are a Concerned individual – ‘for myself, my family and others I care about’ – the image of the Girl Eating the Cucumber OF NOTE – once you have done the Registration, do NOT click on the link that requests you to complete your profile again, but click on the image of the Girl Eating the Cucumber:
  4. Follow along with the Questions and Answers. Complete and submit each section (one at a time).

We hope these tips help you out with your submission! Have your say on how Canada’s next Food Guide looks.

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