Aug 19, 2020
WASHINGTON, DC -- Last week, USA Rice spokesperson and nutrition expert Dr. Julie Miller Jones testified on the recently released Dietary Guidelines Advisory Committee Scientific Report which will serve as the foundation for the 2020-2025 Dietary Guidelines for Americans (DGA).
Dr. Jones, distinguished scholar and professor emerita of foods and nutrition at St. Catherine University, spoke via video conference, and focused on three components of the report: the recommendations for grains (whole, enriched, and refined), the significance of fortification, and the importance of respecting cultural-based preferences in the guidelines.
Dr. Jones applauded the Committee’s conclusion that whole grains are an integral part of a healthy diet. She noted that enriched grains provide important nutrients such as folic acid, and asked that the final DGA clarify the role of refined grains as a staple food for many cultures that provide some nutritional benefits.
Her testimony also focused on the role that rice, and rice products, play in increasing the consumption of certain under-consumed nutrients, and advocated that iron-fortified rice cereal can help children under two-years-old meet the new recommendation of consuming foods rich in iron and zinc during the second six months of life among breastfed infants.
Finally, Dr. Jones talked about the importance of respecting cultural-based preferences by reminding the Committee that rice provides nutritional benefits as a staple food for many cultures across the U.S. and the world that also is affordable and easily accessible.
“The DGA report recommendations are largely positive for rice, and having an expert like Dr. Julie Miller Jones testify “in-person” on behalf of the U.S. rice industry is powerful,” said Michael Klein, USA Rice vice president of domestic promotion. “Dr. Jones is a well-respected voice within the scientific community and her support gives enormous credibility to the USA Rice recommendations.”
Publication of the final version of the 2020-2025 Dietary Guidelines for Americans is expected later this year or in early 2021.