Australia's National Health and Medical Research Council has updated the dietary guidelines in the country for the first time in eight years and warned that Australians should bring about radical changes in what they eat in order to curb the rising rates of diabetes and obesity.
The guidelines also recommended what pregnant women and children under the age of four should be eating. Review committee chairwoman Dr Amanda Lee said that more than 20 percent of children are already classified as obese by the time they start going to pre-school in Australia.
According to the guidelines, Australians will have to cut their intake of starchy vegetables, such as potatoes, by 40 percent, refined cereals by 30 percent and red meat by 20 percent. On the other hand, adults should increase their intake of wholegrain cereals by 160 percent, red and orange vegetables by 140 percent and poultry and seafood intake by 40 percent.
"For some foods the evidence has strengthened, for example, there's increasing evidence that consumption of sugar-sweetened drinks is associated with increased risk of weight gain. There's really good evidence now about the association of whole grain products and decreased risk of heart disease, excessive weight gain and also decreased risk of type-2 diabetes", Dr Lee said.