Grocery Revolution: WIC Embraces Nutrition and Diversity


The federal Women, Infants, and Children (WIC) program, a lifeline for millions of low-income families, is set to undergo a major makeover that emphasizes wholesome foods and celebrates cultural diversity. The LA News Center reports on these substantial changes, which aim to improve the nutritional landscape for countless Americans.

Embracing Whole, Natural Goodness

The updated WIC guidelines, effective within two years, place a paramount emphasis on fruits, vegetables, and whole grains. These nutrient-rich staples are the foundation of a balanced diet and play a vital role in promoting long-term health and well-being.

To expand the culinary choices available to participants, the program has introduced a wide array of wholesome additions. Shoppers can now select canned fish for protein, fresh herbs for flavor, and lactose-free milk for those with dietary sensitivities.

Expanding Cultural Inclusivity

Recognizing the importance of cultural diversity, WIC has incorporated traditional foods into its offerings. Whole grains like quinoa, wild rice, millet, teff, and whole wheat naan now grace the pantry shelves. These nutritious options cater to a broader range of ethnicities and family traditions.

Reducing Processed Foods

In line with the shift towards whole, natural foods, WIC has trimmed allowances for processed items like juice and certain types of milk. This move encourages participants to opt for unrefined, nutrient-dense choices that support optimal health.

Guiding Principles and Updates

The new WIC guidelines are meticulously aligned with the latest recommendations from the National Academies of Science, Engineering, and Medicine, as well as the 2020-2025 Dietary Guidelines for Americans. These standards ensure that the program provides participants with the most scientifically sound nutritional advice.

Peanut Allergy Prevention Missed Opportunity

Despite the inclusion of several new food options, WIC’s revised guidelines have sparked some concern among allergists. The exclusion of peanut products for infants and young children failed to meet a key

Data sourced from: