Well according to Uncle Sam, we are. Whew, that was a close call! In fact, we may be getting too much! Here is a quote right out of the 2010 Dietary Guidelines for Americans: “Shift food intake patterns to a more plant-based diet that emphasizes vegetables, cooked dry beans and peas, fruits, whole grains, nuts, and seeds. In addition, increase the intake of seafood and fat-free and low-fat milk and milk products and consume only moderate amounts of lean meats, poultry, and eggs.”
Good old Uncle Sam is recommending for us to eat less meat! My general feeling is that government usually is reactionary, so based on the current state of our overall health as a country, I would say we may be behind on this one.
According to the food pyramid, we should be consuming between 5-6 oz of meats and beans per day (depending on your age, height, sex, activity level (hehe) and so on). This is what they are calling the protein foods group and it consists of: meats, poultry, eggs, dry beans & peas, nuts & seeds and fish. In addition, they recommend to “vary your choices – with more fish, beans, peas, nuts, and seeds.” Lets say then that we consume half (of the 5-6 oz) from a meat source and half from the others. That would mean, we should be consuming about 2.5-3 oz of meat per day.
That is not a lot. To give you an idea, if we were targeting 2.5-3oz of meat per day, then that quarter pounder you had for lunch, covers your daily intake of meat (plus a little of tomorrows allotment) and if you opted for the half pounder, you are set for 2 days!
Image provided by: Suat Eman