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  #1   ^
Old Mon, May-19-08, 11:24
Feinman Feinman is offline
 
Plan: My own
Stats: 208/180/165 Male 70 inches
BF:
Progress:
Default Help fix the pyramid

Dear Members of the Low Carb Forum:

As you probably know, the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) shapes the contents of the food pyramid. They are currently in the process of developing plans for the 2010 Food Pyramid. The first step in this process is selecting experts for the relevant committee. This panel should reasonably include scientists or nutritionists who have experience with diets low in carbohydrates and, understand their impact on health.

I have worked on important research in the field of lipid metabolism and carbohydrate restricted diet with Dr. Jeff Volek (University of Connecticut) and I think Dr. Volek is the best candidate but, if you like, you can suggest other researchers with similar points of view (e.g. Eric Westman, Robert Lustig or me).

Following is a sample template letter to the USDA (Carole.Davis~cnpp.usda.gov). I urge you to customize with your own personal story, (Be sure to cc: NMS info~nmsociety.org and your Congressional Represenative and Senators). The dead line for nominations is May 23 so please take the time to do this now.

Your personal stories about the results of lowering carbohydrates in your diet will send a powerful message to Congress and to the USDA about what the composition of the USDA advisory committee should be.

I appreciate your efforts in ensuring that the truth in science be made available to the public.

Best regards,

Richard Feinman, Ph.D.
Professor of Biochemistry, State University of New York Downstate
Board Member, Nutrition & Metabolism Society


=============== sample letter ============

[Your name]
[Your street address]
[Your city, state, and zip code]

May 19, 2008
Carole Davis Carole.Davis~cnpp.usda.gov Nutrition Promotion Staff Director Co-Executive Secretary of the Dietary Guidelines Advisory Committee Center for Nutrition Policy and Promotion U.S. Department of Agriculture 3101 Park Center Drive, Room 1034 Alexandria, Virginia 22302
Dear Ms. Davis:
I am writing you about the recent announcement about the establishment of the Dietary Guidelines Advisory Committee for the 2010 Food Pyramid. I understand that the selection process is currently underway to determine what voices will be part of the discussion about the framework for the American diet. Some aspects of the current food pyramid are not a reflection of the needs that most Americans like myself have in order to maintain health. I encourage you to ensure that researchers who have performed extensive studies on the benefits of adjusting variables in the diet, like Dr. ___________ be included on the panel.
I have many reasons for wanting to make sure that the panel includes experts on the science behind different kinds of diets, such as diets low in carbohydrates.
[insert your own personal story 1 or 2 paragraphs about the results you have achieved by lowering the carbohydrates in your diet. Write about how these results have made you feel. What health effects have you seen?]
Facts about the science of low-carb diets are important to the discussion about the new food pyramid. I urge you to make sure the Dietary Guidelines Advisory Committee includes scientists who are well-informed about these issues.
Sincerely,
[Your name]
Cc: www.NMSociety.org (your senator here) (your congress person here)
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  #2   ^
Old Mon, May-19-08, 12:00
deirdra's Avatar
deirdra deirdra is offline
Senior Member
Posts: 2,732
 
Plan: HF/vLC/GF,CF,SF
Stats: 197/136/150 Female 66 inches
BF:
Progress: 130%
Location: Alberta
Default

Great idea - I'll do it (& use my parents' address in the US).

I lived through the 4 food groups and 5 food groups while growing up in the US. Perhaps in the revision it would be better to not use a pyramid because the base and apex seem to be valued more than other parts. How about a pie-chart?

I'd like to see carbs (vegetables, fruits, grains, legumes) all in one group - I'll choose veggies & 1 fruit, thanks. Proteins in another group, fats (including nuts, seeds, avocado as well as butter & oils) in another. They can add a junk group (<10% or "sparingly") that includes all processed foods, candy, etc., if they must.

In addition to who to put on the committee, I will add my $0.02 about who NOT to put on the committee: lobbyists fighting for their foods to figure prominently - not for health, but for profit.

Last edited by deirdra : Mon, May-19-08 at 12:05.
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  #3   ^
Old Mon, May-19-08, 13:01
cleochatra cleochatra is offline
Great seller! A+++++
Posts: 1,374
 
Plan: mine
Stats: 123/456/789 Female 2'3"
BF:
Progress: 50%
Default

I've put this two high-profile places and will add an third.

The more who see this the better!
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  #4   ^
Old Mon, May-19-08, 17:33
LilithD's Avatar
LilithD LilithD is offline
Senior Member
Posts: 602
 
Plan: paleo/atkins
Stats: 134/134/127 Female 172
BF:
Progress: 0%
Location: New Zealand
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They also need to clarify whether the pyramid regards calories or volume. If volume, our biggest level would be vegetables, if calories, it would be fat.
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  #5   ^
Old Mon, May-19-08, 17:40
cleochatra cleochatra is offline
Great seller! A+++++
Posts: 1,374
 
Plan: mine
Stats: 123/456/789 Female 2'3"
BF:
Progress: 50%
Default

I sent my letter and others are doing the same. I also copied to my local congressfolks. I am hopeful that they're listening.

Thanks for all you do!
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  #6   ^
Old Mon, May-19-08, 18:14
Baerdric's Avatar
Baerdric Baerdric is offline
Registered Member
Posts: 2,229
 
Plan: Neocarnivore
Stats: 375/345/250 Male 74 inches
BF:
Progress: 24%
Location: Vermont
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Is there any hope that this will affect the outcome? I mean I'll just be glad the message is sent, but I would rather see actual change.
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  #7   ^
Old Mon, May-19-08, 18:51
LessLiz's Avatar
LessLiz LessLiz is offline
Registered Member
Posts: 6,938
 
Plan: who knows
Stats: 337/204/180 Female 67 inches
BF:100% pure
Progress: 85%
Location: Pacific NW
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More hope with the letters than without them.
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  #8   ^
Old Mon, May-19-08, 19:22
Baerdric's Avatar
Baerdric Baerdric is offline
Registered Member
Posts: 2,229
 
Plan: Neocarnivore
Stats: 375/345/250 Male 74 inches
BF:
Progress: 24%
Location: Vermont
Default

Well, yeah. I didn't mean to suggest that we hold back. I guess I just feel a little cynical about getting the USDA to go against the Grain industry.
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  #9   ^
Old Mon, May-19-08, 19:25
LessLiz's Avatar
LessLiz LessLiz is offline
Registered Member
Posts: 6,938
 
Plan: who knows
Stats: 337/204/180 Female 67 inches
BF:100% pure
Progress: 85%
Location: Pacific NW
Default

Funny, the original 4 food groups supposedly came about due to the strength of the dairy and cattle industries.
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  #10   ^
Old Mon, May-19-08, 19:33
Baerdric's Avatar
Baerdric Baerdric is offline
Registered Member
Posts: 2,229
 
Plan: Neocarnivore
Stats: 375/345/250 Male 74 inches
BF:
Progress: 24%
Location: Vermont
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by LessLiz
Funny, the original 4 food groups supposedly came about due to the strength of the dairy and cattle industries.
Really? Surprising how that changed.

Of course, I was active in the "diet" world when a lot of these changes started. From where I stood, it seemed like the urge to go towards a carbohydrate based diet was driven by Hindu mysticism. People wanted to believe that eating animals was bad for you because the Beatles were studying under a Yogi and Yoga was popular and lots of people were playing sitars and the Hindu people didn't eat meat and they were reputed to be really good at sex and everything...

But that's from a viewpoint inside an Ashram.
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  #11   ^
Old Tue, May-20-08, 03:39
moggsy's Avatar
moggsy moggsy is offline
Senior Member
Posts: 1,072
 
Plan: Paleo
Stats: 350/280/150 Female 5 feet 6 inches
BF:generous
Progress: 35%
Location: UK
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Anyone know how to get a congressperson or senator's direct email? All I can find are wonky web forms.
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  #12   ^
Old Tue, May-20-08, 04:11
moggsy's Avatar
moggsy moggsy is offline
Senior Member
Posts: 1,072
 
Plan: Paleo
Stats: 350/280/150 Female 5 feet 6 inches
BF:generous
Progress: 35%
Location: UK
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Well, done and dusted. A little more difficult using web forms as a US citizen and registered voter who doesn't have a US phone number or address. Plus, it looks better to have the emails sitting there plainly in the cc form.
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  #13   ^
Old Tue, May-20-08, 05:14
Feinman Feinman is offline
 
Plan: My own
Stats: 208/180/165 Male 70 inches
BF:
Progress:
Default Audacity of hope.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Baerdric
Is there any hope that this will affect the outcome? I mean I'll just be glad the message is sent, but I would rather see actual change.


There is every hope that this will make a big impact -- if we keep up the pressure. All of these boards and panels -- and most of all, the congress, are very heterogeneous. The conservative voices tend to overpower things but there are many people with open-minded attitudes. Many elected officials are thoughtful and want to do the right thing -- why their actual performance is so weak is supposedly excused by the multitude of different interests they have to respond to, but hope is certainly in order.

Remember the American Diabetes Association's recent take on low carb is, in my view, pathetic and misleading but they see it as a concession. Mostly, they gave in to the pressure that we brought. Personally, I think it was the Men's Health article that got to them but I and others have been corresponding with them for months. There is definitely hope that it can be done in a reasonable amount of time. There is certainty that, in the long run, the science will win out.

Audacity of hope? I like that. Would make a good book title.
RF
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  #14   ^
Old Tue, May-20-08, 05:35
Baerdric's Avatar
Baerdric Baerdric is offline
Registered Member
Posts: 2,229
 
Plan: Neocarnivore
Stats: 375/345/250 Male 74 inches
BF:
Progress: 24%
Location: Vermont
Default

Conservatives? Really! I would have thought it was the granola crowd that you had to fight. They were who brought in the various entrenched agencies and nanny state guidelines.

But if it's the Conservatives fighting you then they are just as wrong as a Liberal would be. And I happen to have some say in a fairly large Conservative network. I'll check with some folks I know and see who it is that is putting a plug in things and maybe we can light some matches in some shoes.
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  #15   ^
Old Tue, May-20-08, 06:48
cleochatra cleochatra is offline
Great seller! A+++++
Posts: 1,374
 
Plan: mine
Stats: 123/456/789 Female 2'3"
BF:
Progress: 50%
Default

I'm wondering if he means conservative as in 'continuing the norm.' He used a small "c" and said as opposed to "people with open-minded attitudes."

I could be wrong, however.
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