The 2020-2025 U.S. Dietary Guidelines for Infants and Children Under Two

A message from Mardi Mountford, President of the Infant Nutrition Council of America

For the first time, the 2020-2025 U.S. Dietary Guidelines for Americans (DGAs) includes recommendations for children under two years of age. The Infant Nutrition Council of America (INCA) commends the U.S Departments of Agriculture (USDA) and Health and Human Services (HHS) for expanding the guidelines to include this important age group.

The 2020-2025 DGAs confirms that breast milk is the preferred infant feeding option.  The DGAs also identify commercial, iron-fortified infant formula as the only safe and recommended alternative for those who cannot or choose not to use breast milk.  The DGAs recommend against using homemade infant formula and those that are illegally imported into the United States without mandated FDA review and supervision as they are unsafe infant feeding alternatives.  Other notable recommendations for infants and children under two years of age include the recommendation for Vitamin D supplements for breastfed infants and the recommendation to encourage young children  to consume a variety of complementary, nutrient dense foods and beverages to meet energy and nutrient needs. It is INCA’s position that toddler nutritional drinks can provide essential nutrients often lacking in the diets of young children.

The 2020-2025 Dietary Guidelines for children under the age of two empowers those making infant feeding decisions with accurate, science-based information. The choice parents make about how to feed their child is an important and personal decision rooted in individual circumstances. INCA looks forward to putting the science-based Dietary Guidelines recommendations concerning infant feeding into practice to support all mothers, fathers and caregivers in making the best nutrition decisions for their infants and their families.