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Dietary Guidelines

PRIORITY POLICY

Dietary Guidelines

The Dietary Guidelines for Americans, 2020-2025 was the first edition to provide recommendations by life stage, including for infants, toddlers, and women who are pregnant or lactating. The DGA recommends that children younger than age 2 avoid foods and beverages with added sugars. It also recommends exclusively feeding infants human breast milk for the first 6 months of life and substituting iron-fortified infant formula when human milk is not available.

The next iteration of the DGA, which will cover 2025-2030, is expected to address ultra-processed foods and emphasize health equity to ensure that guidance is relevant to people with diverse racial, ethnic, socioeconomic, and cultural backgrounds. The first public comment period to inform the next DGA and selection of members who will serve on the expert advisory panel closed on May 16, 2022.

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Recommendations

The Robert Wood Johnson Foundation urges these actions to ensure children lead healthy lives.

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USDA and HHS should work with the Dietary Guidelines Advisory Committee to finalize guidelines in a timely manner and in a way that will help reduce consumption of added sugars.

USDA and HHS should work with the Dietary Guidelines Advisory Committee to maintain the scientific integrity of the Dietary Guidelines.

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Fast Facts

Dietary guidelines have wide-ranging impacts

The 2020-2025 Dietary Guidelines for Americans recommend that children under 2 years of age consume no added sugars.

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55

In the U.S., kids ages 5-8 have a Healthy Eating Index score of 55 (out of 100).

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30

On average, children consume more than 30 gallons of sugary drinks every year.

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