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Local dietitian questions Conservative leader's expertise on food guide

Last Updated Jul 17, 2019 at 7:17 pm PDT

FILE: Health Minister Ginette Petitpas Taylor, right, and nutritionist Jessica Cole look over samples of some of the food groups at the unveiling of Canada's new Food Guide, Tuesday, January 22, 2019 in Montreal.THE CANADIAN PRESS/Ryan Remiorz
Summary

Federal Conservative leader Andrew Scheer says Canada's Food Guide is biased because of a lack of consultation

But a local dietitian says this food guide is "way less biased" because the food industry was not involved

VANCOUVER (NEWS 1130) – Federal Conservative leader Andrew Scheer is promising a review of the Canada Food Guide if he becomes prime minister in the next election.

Scheer’s concern stems from a lack of consultation, which he argues, leaves the guide in the hands of ideologues and open to bias.

But registered dietitian Ali Chernoff says that the opposite is actually true.

“He’s not a dietitian. He’s not a health expert,” she says.

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In an effort to have an unbiased process, Chernoff says public consultation was an important piece of this guide.

“It’s actually way less biased than it ever used to be because this is the first year ever that they did not get input from anybody in the industry,” says Chernoff.

 

She says that anger over meats and dairy being lower in importance in the updated food guide is misguided.

“They’re saying that meat is eliminated,” she says. “But it’s not that meat is eliminated. Because when you look at the other [previous] food guide and compare it to this one, it was also at the bottom.”

She also reiterates that it’s a guide and no one is forced to follow it.

Health Minister Ginette Petitpas Taylor agrees that health policy should come from scientific evidence and not industry.

“That’s exactly the approach our Government took in crafting Canada’s new Food Guide, which explains its incredibly positive reception from Canadians,” Taylor says.