Life is a matter of choices, and every choice you make makes youJohn C. Maxwell
Make Every Bite Count with the Dietary Guidelines
In December 2020 the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) released the Dietary Guidelines for Americans for 2020 – 2025. The dietary guidelines are science-based recommendations to promote health, prevent disease, and meet nutrient needs. The advice they give has remained relatively consistent over time and evolves as scientific knowledge expands.
They emphasize the guidelines are not a rigid set of rules but rather a customizable framework of core elements that allow individuals to make dietary choices that meet their personal preferences, cultural traditions, and budgetary considerations. They highlight the importance of healthy dietary patterns at every stage of life since dietary requirements change as people age.
The Dietary guidelines encourage individuals to focus on eating primarily whole foods, choosing a variety of options for each food group, and paying attention to the portion size. They also encourage the limiting of foods and beverages higher in added sugars, saturated fat, and sodium (aka junk food.)
The USDA realizes humans are not robots…and pizza is too good to never eat it again. This is why the guidelines, show you how to incorporate “junk” food in an otherwise health-promoting diet.
Make Every Dollar Count with Investing Guidelines
Just like how dietary guidelines are recommendations for health-promoting dietary patterns, investing guidelines (policy) can be used to provide recommendations for wealth-promoting investment patterns.
These guidelines are not a rigid set of rules but rather a customizable framework of core elements that allow individuals to make investment choices that accommodate their personal circumstances and preferences. Following these predetermined guidelines can help to create wealth-promoting investing patterns for every stage of life.
There is no universal diet, and there is no universal investment portfolio. A portfolio should be constructed base on an individual’s circumstances and focus on investments that can meet their needs while allowing for less efficient investments in limited quantities.
Just like with the dietary recommendations, variety (diversification), and portion size (allocation) are important considerations when implementing a balanced investment approach.
Allowing for Inefficiency
Similar to how the USDA shows you how to fit “junk” food into your diet, it is important to show investors how to incorporate less than ideal investments in an otherwise wealth-promoting portfolio. For some people, this means taking a portion of their portfolio and investing it in more “speculative” investments while for others it’s using that portion and stuffing it under their mattress.
Neither is right or wrong, but rather an outlet that allows someone to leave the core of their portfolio invested in a way that gives them the best chance of meeting their goals. Even if this means your overall portfolio is not the “most efficient” for your situation, having it set up in a way that allows you to handle market volatility and stay invested is far more important.
By using either dietary or investing guidelines you can customize the framework to meet you where you are and develop patterns that will drive positive long-term results. Consistent good decisions, however small they may seem, can make a huge difference when compounded over a lifetime.
Make every bite count, make every dollar count.
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