The Dietary Guidelines for Americans provide evidence-based nutrition information and guidance to help Americans make healthier food choices. These Dietary Guidelines, which serve as the nutrition policy in the United States, are released jointly every five years by the U.S. Departments of Agriculture and Health and Human Services.
Since the first edition of the Dietary Guidelines in 1980, there has always been a guideline on alcohol consumption. While nutrition advice for various foods groups has changed over the years, the Federal government’s key recommendation on alcohol consumption has remained virtually the same since the Guidelines’ inception – if alcohol is consumed, it should be consumed in moderation. The Alcohol Guideline also provides useful consumer information including definitions for moderate vs. binge drinking; circumstances in which people should not drink; and information on the potential risks and benefits associated with alcohol consumption.
The Alcohol Guideline has been the centerpiece of education programs supported by the distillers. Over the last ten years, the Distilled Spirits Council has distributed several thousand copies of the Alcohol Guideline to physicians, nutritionists and other healthcare professionals.