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"1. They have nuts labeled (with a photo) as fats, not differentiating oil and saturated fats (with their negative health effects) different from nuts/seeds with dramatically protective effects against serious disease. And they have seeds/nuts placed above dairy and animal products, which they recommended 3 – 7 servings a day. Diary or cheese supply the major load of saturated fats in the American diet and nuts and seeds are the foods that demonstrate the most dramatic protection against sudden cardiac death of any food on the dietary landscape in the largest and most respected studies.
2. They placed one giant label on carbohydrate, essentially equating the dramatic lifespan enhancing properties and weight loss benefits of beans, mixed in right along with white potato and bagels and pasta.
3. Wouldn’t you say consuming 2 – 4 servings of animal products a week (in my pyramid) is lots different from 21 to 49 servings a week (in the Mayo pyramid) ?
4. Lumping all carbohydrates together, all proteins in another and then fats in another, at different levels is just wrong. The macronutrient type is not a measurement of nutritional quality or weight loss potential. Obviously those are not the measurements that determine health. Overall, this confuses people even more, reinforcing the problem that created this epidemic of disease to begin with. Most foods are a mixture of fat/carb/and protein, so their classification is inaccurate, but it is the nutritional quality of the food not whether one macronutrient predominates that is the main issue. Their pyramid just restates the Standard American diet with the caveat of eating some more fruits and vegetables. Not bad, and a step in the right direction, but certainly very far from ideal.
Overall, I think comparing their pyramid to the one in Eat To Live undervalues the careful science used in the construction of the Eat To Live pyramid and kind of credits their pyramid with more value than it deserves. To equate or say there are only subtle differences between their “more conventional and socially acceptable” pyramid, with the Eat To Live (ideal nutrition) pyramid that maximizes results, lifespan and reverse disease is not quite fair and is distracts from the real value there.
My diet-style emphasizes 5 basic food classes that should be eaten even for those just taking baby steps into healthier eating just getting their feet wet. These specific food classes should occupy a larger percent of the dietary pie chart.
1. At least one large salad of raw vegetables every day
2. At least 4 pieces of fresh fruit a day
3. At least 1 cup of beans a day, with a one cup goal
4. At least 1 ounce of seeds/nuts a day
5. A large double size portion of steamed green vegetables a day.
In other words, the beans and seeds/nuts and raw veggies and cooked veggies, are all important components of a healthy diet. The basic volume of healthy food to shoot for gives some micronutrients quality for the appetite drive to even approximate normalcy."
I think this is an interesting and very important debate, and we will definitely publish any response from the Mayo Clinic right here.
The Mayo Clinic Diet Journal (You Can Purchase Separately)
By the weight-loss experts at Mayo Clinic and Donald Hensrud, M.D., M.P.H. Authors of The Mayo Clinic Diet: Eat well. Enjoy life. Lose weight.
Healthy cooking doesn't mean you have to become a gourmet chef or invest in special cookware. Simply use standard cooking methods to prepare foods in healthy ways. You can also adapt familiar recipes by substituting other ingredients for fat, sugar and salt.
Use these methods
These methods best capture the flavor and retain the nutrients in your food without adding too much fat or salt.
• Baking. Besides breads and desserts, you can bake seafood, poultry, lean meat, and vegetable and fruit pieces of the same size. Place food in a pan or dish (covered or uncovered) and bake. You may need to baste the food with broth, low-fat marinade or juice to keep the food from drying out.
• Braising. Braising involves browning the meat or poultry first in a pan on top of the stove, and then slowly cooking it covered with a small amount of liquid, such as water or broth. In some recipes, the cooking liquid is used afterward to form a flavorful, nutrient-rich sauce.
• Grilling and broiling. Both grilling and broiling expose fairly thin pieces of food to direct heat and allow fat to drip away from the food. If you're grilling outdoors, place smaller items, such as chopped vegetables, in a long-handled grill basket or on foil to prevent pieces from slipping through the rack. To broil indoors place food on a broiler rack below a heat element.
• Poaching. To poach foods, in a covered pan gently simmer ingredients in water or a flavorful liquid, such as broth, vinegar or juice, until cooked through and tender. For stove-top poaching, choose an appropriate-sized covered pan and use a minimum amount of liquid.
• Roasting. Roasting uses an oven's dry heat at high temperatures to cook the food on a baking sheet or in a roasting pan. For poultry, seafood and meat, place a rack inside the roasting pan so that the fat can drip away during cooking.
• Sautéing. Sautéing quickly cooks small or thin pieces of food. If you choose a good-quality nonstick pan, you can cook food without using fat. Depending on the recipe, use low-sodium broth, cooking spray, water or wine in place of oil or butter.
• Steaming. One of the simplest cooking techniques to master is steaming food in a perforated basket suspended above simmering liquid. If you use a flavorful liquid or add herbs to the water, you'll flavor the food as it cooks.
• Stir-frying. Stir-frying quickly cooks small, uniform-sized pieces of food while they're rapidly stirred in a wok or large nonstick frying pan. You need only a small amount of oil or cooking spray for this cooking method.
Find new ways to add flavor
Instead of salt or butter, you can enhance foods with a variety of herbs, spices and low-fat condiments. Be creative.
Poach fish in low-fat broth or wine and fresh herbs. Top a broiled chicken breast with fresh salsa. Make meats more flavorful with low-fat marinades or spices -- bay leaf, chili powder, dry mustard, garlic, ginger, green pepper, sage, marjoram, onion, oregano, pepper or thyme.
To bring out the sweetness in baked goods, use a bit more vanilla, cinnamon or nutmeg.
If the recipe calls for:
The above is an excerpt from the book The Mayo Clinic Diet: Eat well. Enjoy life. Lose weight., by the weight-loss experts at Mayo Clinic and Donald Hensrud, M.D., M.P.H. The above excerpt is a digitally scanned reproduction of text from print. Although this excerpt has been proofread, occasional errors may appear due to the scanning process. Please refer to the finished book for accuracy.
Reprinted from The Mayo Clinic Diet, © 2010 Mayo Foundation for Medical Education and Research. Published by Good Books (www.GoodBooks.com). Used by permission. All rights reserved.
About Donald Hensrud, M.D.
Donald Hensrud, M.D., M.P.H., is chair of the Division of Preventive, Occupational, and Aerospace Medicine and a consultant in the Division of Endocrinology, Metabolism and Nutrition at Mayo Clinic, Rochester, Minn. He is also an associate professor of preventive medicine and nutrition at the College of Medicine, Mayo Clinic. A specialist in nutrition and weight management, Dr. Hensrud advises individuals on how to achieve and maintain a healthy weight. He conducts research in weight management, and he writes and lectures widely on nutrition-related topics. He helped publish two award-winning Mayo Clinic cookbooks.
About Mayo Clinic
Mayo Clinic is the first and largest integrated, not-for-profit group practice in the world. Doctors from every medical specialty work together to care for patients, joined by common systems and a philosophy that the needs of the patient come first. Over 3,600 physicians and scientists and 50,000 allied staff work at Mayo, which has sites in Rochester, Minn.; Jacksonville, Fla.; and Scottsdale/Phoenix, Ariz. Collectively, Mayo Clinic treats more than 500,000 patients a year.
For more than 100 years, millions of people from all walks of life have found answers at Mayo Clinic. Mayo Clinic works with many insurance companies, does not require a physician referral in most cases and is an in-network provider for millions of people.