The American Diabetes Association Commends the Release of the 2015-2020 Dietary Guidelines for Americans to Promote Healthier Living

Alexandria, Virginia
January 8, 2016

The American Diabetes Association® is pleased with overarching guidelines in the current edition that encourage following healthy eating patterns and choosing a variety of nutrient-dense foods—including vegetables, fruits, whole grains, fat-free or low-fat dairy, a variety of protein foods and oils—in recommended amounts. We are also pleased to see the Guidelines emphasize strategies that help Americans shift to healthier food and beverage choices and support healthy eating patterns for all.

These recommendations are important to the health of all Americans, including the nearly 30 million Americans with diabetes and 86 million Americans with prediabetes. It is the position of the Association that there is not a "one-size-fits-all" eating pattern for individuals with diabetes, per our 2013 Nutrition Therapy Recommendations for the Management of Adults With Diabetes. Healthful eating patterns, emphasizing a variety of nutrient-dense foods in appropriate portion sizes, are key in assisting individuals with diabetes to improve their overall health, and specifically to attain individualized glycemic, blood pressure and lipid goals; achieve and maintain body weight goals; and delay or prevent complications of diabetes.

Many of the recommendations in the updated Guidelines are consistent with the previous edition, released in 2010. However, the addition of a specific limit on consumption of added sugars is noteworthy. To achieve healthy eating patterns within calorie limits, the updated Guidelines recommend that individuals consume less than 10 percent of calories per day from added sugars. The Association supports the need for individuals to choose eating patterns that reduce intake of added sugars. Though the Association notes that the specific amount of total carbohydrate intake for people with diabetes must be individualized, it is the position of the Association that carbohydrate intake from vegetables, fruits, whole grains, legumes and dairy products should be advised over intake from other carbohydrate sources, especially those that contain added fats, sugars or sodium, per our 2013 Nutrition Therapy Recommendations for the Management of Adults With Diabetes.

As noted in the Guidelines, a healthy eating pattern limits saturated and trans fats, added sugars and sodium. The Association also supports key recommendations to consume less than 10 percent of calories per day from saturated fats and consume less than 2,300 milligrams per day of sodium.

These key recommendations within the 2015-2020 Dietary Guidelines for Americans provide an important roadmap toward healthy eating patterns and the Association's continued effort to be a resource to Americans looking to lead healthier lives and one day Stop Diabetes®.

About the American Diabetes Association

Nearly half of American adults have diabetes or prediabetes; more than 30 million adults and children have diabetes; and every 21 seconds, another individual is diagnosed with diabetes in the U.S. Founded in 1940, the American Diabetes Association (ADA) is the nation’s leading voluntary health organization whose mission is to prevent and cure diabetes, and to improve the lives of all people affected by diabetes. The ADA drives discovery by funding research to treat, manage and prevent all types of diabetes, as well as to search for cures; raises voice to the urgency of the diabetes epidemic; and works to safeguard policies and programs that protect people with diabetes. In addition, the ADA supports people living with diabetes, those at risk of developing diabetes, and the health care professionals who serve them through information and programs that can improve health outcomes and quality of life. For more information, please call the ADA at 1-800-DIABETES (1-800-342-2383) or visit diabetes.org. Information from both of these sources is available in English and Spanish. Find us on Facebook (American Diabetes Association), Twitter (@AmDiabetesAssn) and Instagram (@AmDiabetesAssn)