Dietary Guidelines cycle kicks off

February 2, 2023

The process of revising the Dietary Guidelines for Americans (DGA) moved forward as federal agencies appointed a scientific advisory committee that will largely write the guidelines and scheduled the panel’s first meeting. The Dietary Guidelines Advisory Committee (DGAC) membership was announced on Jan. 19, and the first public DGAC meeting will be held Feb. 9-10. The meeting is virtual and open for registration now.

The DGA is the official nutrition guidance of the U.S. government and is revised every five years. Although the guidelines are formally issued by the Secretaries of Health and Human Services and Agriculture, they normally reflect the recommendations of the expert scientific committee, so the upcoming stage of the process is important. The latest editions of the DGA have been favorable to egg demand, removing previous limits on cholesterol intake and identifying eggs as a nutrient-dense food.

The DGA has real-world consequences. For example, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) recently proposed to modify the rules for calling products “healthy” on packaging. Part of the proposal would remove cholesterol limits and permit eggs to be labeled “healthy” – a direct result of the DGA’s previous reconsideration of cholesterol advice. The DGA also influences product formulation decisions by food companies, federal food purchasing and the rules for federal nutrition assistance programs. UEP will be monitoring the DGAC’s work, filing science-based comments and encouraging the federal agencies to maintain eggs’ favorable position in the guidelines.