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Dietary Guidelines for Americans

2005 Dietary Guidelines

Following a May 2003 Federal Register notice calling for nominations, the HHS and USDA  Secretaries selected 13 nutrition scientists and physicians to serve on the Dietary Guidelines Advisory Committee.  Not only was the Committee responsible for reviewing and updating the Dietary Guidelines for Americans, 2000, but a fresh new approach was used in considering how they should be updated or changed.  The Committee members initially posed 40 specific research questions that were put through an extensive evidence-based search and review of the scientific literature.  Issues relating diet and physical activity to health promotion and chronic disease prevention were examined. Other major sources of evidence used were the Dietary Reference Intake (DRI) reports prepared by expert committees convened by the Institute of Medicine (IOM) as well as various Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ) and World Health Organization (WHO) reports.  Numerous food intake pattern modeling analyses were completed by USDA, various national data sets were analyzed and advice was sought from invited experts.

After dropping some questions because of incomplete or inconclusive data, the Committee wrote conclusive statements and comprehensive rationales for 34 of the 40 original questions.  The evidence-based analysis of the science formed the basis for 9 major Dietary Guidelines messages that resulted in the 41 Key Recommendations, of which 23 were for the general public and 18 were for special population groups.


After a year of review and 5 meetings, the Committee submitted their final report to HHS and USDA: Report of the Dietary Guidelines Advisory Committee on the Dietary Guidelines for Americans, 2005.  This report resulted in a very detailed analysis of the science and contained 364 printed pages with many more pages of evidence-based tables that were filed electronically.

On January 12, 2005, the Secretaries of HHS and USDA released an 80-page policy document (the first of its kind) intended primarily for use by policymakers, healthcare providers, nutritionists, and nutrition educators.  This document was prepared by HHS and USDA from the Dietary Guidelines Advisory Committee Report and became the 6th edition of the Dietary Guidelines for Americans.  Also released at the same time was a 10-page consumer brochure called, Finding Your Way to a Healthier You. For more information on the Dietary Guidelines for Americans, 2005, and for additional publications, click here.

As part of the Putting the Guidelines into Practice series, USDA plans to update consumer brochures with the Dietary Guidelines for Americans, 2005 and MyPyramid. See the right column for updated publications.

The 2005 Dietary Guidelines remained the current guidance until the 2010 Dietary Guidelines were published on January 31, 2011.


Last Modified: August 15, 2013 12:46 PM

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