During WWII, the US government was concerned that troops might suffer nutritional deficiencies due to food rationing. A committee established a set of guidelines for certain nutrients to ensure “superior nutrition” for citizens and military personnel, most who were on rations. In essence, these guidelines were established to prevent the onset of nutritional deficiency diseases such as scurvy, pellagra, and rickets.
Today, the Recommended Dietary Allowances (RDA’s) indicate the daily dietary intake level of a nutrient considered sufficient by the Food and Nutrition Board to meet the requirements of 97.5% of healthy individuals in each life-stage and gender group. RDA’s have been modified on various occasions since inception in 1941… though they really only set levels for minimum nutritional requirements for various vitamins, minerals, and nutrients.
But do today’s RDA’s set levels that serve us today?
Not a chance.
I don’t know about you, but I haven’t met anyone in my lifetime with scurvy or rickets. Those aren’t the diseases we see and hear about today. Heart disease, cancer, Alzheimer’s, diabetes, arthritis. These are chronic degenerative diseases… diseases that manifest in our bodies over a long period of time.
What’s brought about this increase in chronic degenerative disease? Sedentary lifestyles, a degradation of the food supply, our toxic environment, stress.
To combat these chronic degenerative diseases and these conditions, you don’t need minimum nutritional levels. You need optimal nutrition…nutrition that will give your immune system the ammunition needed to combat its daily assault.
Let’s take Vitamin C as an example. The RDA for Vitamin C is 60mg. Many nutritional scientists…no, not the ones financed or supported by Big Pharma… will recommend dosages of 1,000mg, 2,000mg, or more as safe levels for attaining an optimal daily requirement of this important nutrient. That’s a huge discrepancy. And one of many that needs to be seriously re-addressed when establishing RDA levels that will actually serve the public.
So ignore how your food choice or nutritional supplement stacks up against RDA levels. Don’t celebrate the fact your bowl of Cheerios you ate this morning provided you with 25% of your daily requirement of Vitamin D. Your body deserves better. Hold yourself accountable to a higher standard and do whatever it takes to achieve optimal nutrition every day.
As for today’s RDA’s, until they are seriously increased, Ridiculous Dietary Allowances is a much more representative name!