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Agricultural News

Cattlemen's Beef Board Using Science to Fight Dietary Guidelines Proposal

Fri, 10 Apr 2015 15:27:58 CDT

Cattlemen's Beef Board Using Science to Fight Dietary Guidelines Proposal

The head of the Cattlemen's Beef Board was in Oklahoma Thursday meeting with young cattle leaders through the Cattlemen's Leadership Academy. Chief Executive Officer Polly Ruhland discussed several topics including dietary guidelines and the battle the beef industry is facing. This includes red meat being reduced to a footnote in the advisory council's recommendations to the Secretaries of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services and U.S. Department of Agriculture. Ruhland said it's important to remember that the final dietary recommendations have not come out.

"So, what the lean meat issue right now is, it was not included in the dietary guidelines report, but we still have a lot of opportunity, not in the checkoff, but in other policy groups to go to the departments of HHS and USDA and talk about meat in the diet," Ruhland said. "On the checkoff side, what we will be doing, is continuing to submit science-based comments in anticipation of these guidelines and helping folks understand the science behind inclusion of lean mean in a healthy diet."

Radio Oklahoma Network Farm Director Ron Hays featured Ruhland on the Beef Buzz feature. Click or tap on the LISTEN BAR below to listen to today's Beef Buzz.

While an average consumer doesn't have to follow or abide by these recommendations, government entities must follow the nation's dietary guidelines. Ruhland said these guidelines form the basis of all of the recommendations that medical professionals provide to their clientele. These guidelines also direct all of the government spending on food. This includes schools, the military, nursing homes and all of those public institutions that buy food.

In a study published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, researchers from Penn State University found that people who participated in the Beef in an Optimal Lean Diet (BOLD) study, consuming lean beef daily as part of a heart-healthy diet, experienced a 10 percent decline in LDL "bad" cholesterol. The BOLD study has become a key piece of nutritional research that the beef industry has leaned on to show that beef deserves a place in a healthy lean diet. Ruhland said it would be nice to have several more studies to lean on, but it's not cheap.

"The challenge with that of course is that human nutrition research is very expensive and it takes quite a while," Ruhland said. "So if we are going to have some more research to offer the next dietary guidelines process, which is in 2020, those research studies take three years sometimes. So we need to think, particularly producer leaders, need to think about how much of the budget can they dedicate to this important nutrition research that will be even more important as we approach 2020."

The Beef Buzz is a regular feature heard on radio stations around the region on the Radio Oklahoma Network- but is also a regular audio feature found on this website as well. Click on the LISTEN BAR below for today's show- and check out our archives for older Beef Buzz shows covering the gamut of the beef cattle industry today.


Ron Hays Beef Buzzes with Polly Ruhland of the Cattlemen's Beef Board
right-click to download mp3


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