Reading Time: 2 minutes PCRM has long critiqued the guidelines, calling them out for 'dietary racism' Credit: PCRM
Reading Time: 2 minutes

A group of doctors is filing a lawsuit against the USDA for promoting cow’s milk in its dietary guidelines. 

Experts from the Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine (PCRM) have issued the court order.

USDA Dietary Guidelines

It urges the USDA to retract three sections of its 2020-2025 dietary guidelines:

  1. Delete dairy promotions, since dairy products increase cancer risk, while nondairy calcium sources help prevent cancer. 
  2. Avoid equating “protein” with meat, as there are abundant sources of protein, such as beans, peas, and lentils, without meat’s fat and cholesterol. 
  3. Eliminate deceptive language hiding the ill effects of consuming meat and dairy products. 

Dietary racism

PCRM has long critiqued the guidelines, calling them out for ‘dietary racism’. This is because lactose intolerance is prevalent among people of color. 

Lactose intolerance can cause issues such as diarrhea, pain, and digestive problems. It affects 95 percent of Asians, 60 – 80 percent of African Americans and Ashkenazi Jews, 80-100 percent of American Indians, and 50 – 80 percent of Hispanic Americans.

Moreover, PCRM member Dr. Forrester is a family practice physician from Sacramento. She said: “One charter of the USDA, to market agricultural goods, including meat and dairy products, is in direct conflict with the National Nutrition Monitoring and Related Research Act.

“[This] requires the Dietary Guidelines ‘include nutritional and dietary information and guidelines for the general public’ based on ‘the preponderance of the scientific and medical knowledge which is current at the time the report is prepared…

“The USDA’s conflict of interest is perhaps best illustrated in its statement that ‘[m]ost individuals would benefit by increasing intake of dairy,’ even though there is no convincing evidence that this is true.”

PCRM added: “The Dietary Guidelines are not inconsequential. They have tangible implications for everyday Americans. 

“The US government uses the Dietary Guidelines as the basis for its food assistance meal programs, nutrition education efforts. And, decisions about national health objectives.”

Liam Giliver

Liam is the Deputy Editor and Social Media Coordinator for Plant Based News. He has written for a number of top publications including Gay Times, Attitude Magazine, Oh Comely, and The Huffington Post - and is the author of 'We're Worried About Him'.