Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics
Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics
News Article | May 15, 2017
The extent of food waste in America is a cause for serious concern. It is estimated that around 1,217 calories per person per day are squandered. A new study in the Journal of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics looks beyond the caloric value of food waste and focuses on the nutritional value of the food we throw away. Investigators found that discarded food contains large amounts of key nutrients like vitamin D, fiber, and potassium that could help people get the food they need to meet their daily recommended intake. In 2014, 14% of American households suffered from food insecurity and an additional 5% experienced a shortage of resources that forced them to skip meals or reduce their food consumption. Across the population, Americans are not getting the recommended intakes of certain nutrients including dietary fiber; calcium; potassium; and vitamins A, C, D, and E. At the same time, Americans continue to waste food at an alarming rate throughout the food supply chain. It's estimated that 31-40% of the post-harvest food supply is discarded. This study was the first to demonstrate the substantial amount of nutrients, including many under-consumed nutrients, wasted due to food discarded at the retail and consumer levels of the U.S. food supply. Quantifying the loss can motivate related investments and support the case for registered dietitian nutritionist engagement with these efforts. The estimates can additionally serve as a baseline for tracking intervention impacts. Data from the National Nutrient Database for Standard Reference were used to calculate the nutritional value of retail and consumer level waste of 213 commodities in the USDA Loss-Adjusted Food Availability data series for 27 nutrients in 2012. The study, led by Roni A. Neff, PhD, Program Director at the Johns Hopkins University Center for a Livable Future (CLF), and Assistant Professor, Department of Environmental Health & Engineering, and Marie L. Spiker, MSPH, RD, CLF-Lerner Fellow and Doctoral Candidate, Department of International Health, Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health, found that losses of under-consumed nutrients were significant. Food wasted at the retail and consumer levels of the U.S. food supply in 2012 contained 1,217 kcal, 33 g protein, 5.9 g dietary fiber, 1.7 mcg vitamin D, 286 mg calcium, and 880 mg potassium per capita per day. Using dietary fiber as an example, 5.9 g dietary fiber is 23% of the RDA for women. This is equivalent to the fiber RDA for 74 million adult women. Adult women in 2012 under-consumed dietary fiber by 8.9 g per day, and the amount of wasted fiber is equivalent to this gap for 206.6 million adult women. Data points like this highlight the need for diverse interventions including standardized date labeling (use by, sell by) and consumer education, so that people can utilize the nutrients instead of throwing them in the trash can. According to the authors, perishable foods such as fruits and vegetables are lost at particularly high rates, leading to exceptional losses of under-consumed nutrients. Changes to our food system can reduce agricultural and pre-consumer waste, and play an important role in shaping the amount of food consumers discard. Cultural shifts are also needed to change consumer and industry attitudes. Even if only the top seven most cost-effective food recovery activities were scaled up and only an additional 1.75% of food waste was recovered, this would translate into 2,000 calories per day for 3.3 million adults. "Although only a portion of discarded food can realistically be made available for human consumption, efforts to redistribute surplus foods where appropriate and prevent food waste in the first place could increase the availability of nutrients for Americans, while saving money and natural resources," concluded the authors. "The U.S. has established a target of halving food loss and waste by 2030. This research supports the case for action and for registered dietitian nutritionists to bring their expertise to the effort."
News Article | April 20, 2017
The findings are based on data collected during 1991-2001 as part of the Framingham Heart Study Offspring Cohort study, which examined various health outcomes including incidence of stroke and dementia during a 10 year follow-up period. The current study suffers from several major limitations, including: All no- and low-calorie sweeteners used in diet beverages have routinely been reviewed and deemed safe by numerous regulatory agencies, including the US Food and Drug Administration. Furthermore, healthcare experts, including the American Diabetes Association, the American Heart Association, and the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics, acknowledge the role that no- and low-calorie sweeteners can have in managing health concerns, such as diabetes and obesity. The American Heart Association states, "Replacing sugary foods and drinks with sugar-free options containing NNSs [no- and low-calorie sweeteners] is one way to limit calories and achieve or maintain a healthy weight. Also, when used to replace food and drinks with added sugars, it can help people with diabetes manage blood glucose levels.2" "Individuals can choose to modify their lifestyle to reduce their risk of stroke by participating in more physical activity, achieving and maintaining a healthy body weight, and smoking cessation. Beverages are an important consideration and diet beverages provide safe, reduced calorie options that people can enjoy while working towards achieving their healthy lifestyle goals," says Robert Rankin, President of the Calorie Control Council, "Rather than focusing on results from observational studies, which cannot establish cause and effect, individuals should talk to their healthcare team to address known risks for stroke and dementia." Keri Peterson, MD and medical advisor to the Calorie Control Council added, "This study design has significant limitations and is unable to prove a causal relationship between artificial sweeteners and stroke or dementia. Known risk factors for stroke and dementia such as high cholesterol, diabetes and high blood pressure can be prevented by maintaining a healthy weight. Swapping out sugary drinks and foods for those containing no- and low-calorie sweeteners remains a valuable tool for people looking to cut calories in order to reach their weight loss goals." 1. Rogers, P.J, Hogenkamp, P.S., de Graaf, C., Higgs, S., Lulch, A., Ness, A.R., Penfold, C., Perry, R., Putz, P., Yeomans, M.R., Mela, D.J. (2016). Does low-energy sweetener consumption affect energy intake and body weight? A systematic review, including meta-analyses, of the evidence from human and animal studies. International Journal of Obesity, 40, 381–394. doi:10.1038/ijo.2015.177. To view the original version on PR Newswire, visit:http://www.prnewswire.com/news-releases/observational-study-linking-no--and-low-calorie-sweetened-beverages-with-stroke-and-dementia-not-based-on-cause-and-effect-does-not-represent-risk-to-americans-300442908.html
News Article | May 17, 2017
Food To Cure What Ails You: When Cookbooks Treated Meals As Medicine Browse through some turn-of-the-century American cookbooks, and it's obvious that popular tastes have changed (such as the presence of fried cornmeal mush and the absence of cilantro). But more striking than the shift in flavors and ingredients is the focus on feeding those who are sick — or, to use the parlance of the time, "cooking for invalids." Whether you're looking at The Settlement Cook Book (1901), Jennie June's American Cookery Book (1870) or The Woman Suffrage Cook Book (1890), sections on nourishing the sick are all somewhat similar in approach. First, there are a lot of fluids. Teas and lemonades, but also barley water, and something unappetizingly called "beef tea." (Think of it as a barely seasoned bouillon.) And there are a surprising number of recipes for "toast water" — basically consisting of the former infused with the latter (a drink evidently so commonplace that a recipe for toast-water lemonade in The Woman Suffrage Cook Book begins by instructing the reader to "make toast water in the usual way.") The books also spell out simple puddings and porridges using thickeners that have fallen out of favor in today's home kitchen (arrowroot, Irish moss). And there are a fair number of jellies, which were popular at the time. Finally, a widespread belief in the healing power of a wee bit of wine or brandy. (Some books, like Mrs. Lincoln's Boston Cook Book (1884), warn against wine or liquor without the advice of a physician.) Almost without fail, these cookbooks outline how to create an environment for optimal healing. It's not just what you serve, but how you serve it. Providing ample dining options (presented in small servings and whisked away when finished), speaking in hushed tones, ensuring proper ventilation and choosing pleasant conversation topics are all recommended, with the attractiveness of the serving bowl given equal weight as the broth it contains. According to culinary historian Anne Mendelson, who has written about the Joy of Cooking (which featured its own recommendations for sickroom care and cooking through the 1943 edition), the presence of these meals amidst the roasts and desserts makes a great deal of sense, given the landscape of the time. "You have to realize that until the early 20th century — World War I — the professionalization of medicine and nursing was just much less advanced," Mendelson explains, "and most people's access to professional care was spotty." Which means a lot of recuperation took place in the home. And, Mendelson notes, in an era when people died in their own beds rather than in the hospital, average Americans had a lot more contact with the sick. "There were extended families living in one home — this was a very common thing 100 years ago ... much more common than it is now. Women had to spend much more time in the home nursing sick children and frail old people. And at that point, childhood illness and childhood mortality were a bigger part of life." Journalist and culinary historian Laura Shapiro has written about American women and cooking during the turn of the century in her book Perfection Salad (including a section on Fannie Farmer, who wrote an entire tome on Food and Cookery for the Sick and Convalescent). Shapiro notes that while published cookbooks of the time formalized the process, guidelines on cooking for invalids appeared in cookbooks long before. "It goes back to Britain, and then back to the Middle Ages. And why not?" Shapiro asks. "Women were not just the cooks, they were also the caretakers of the sick at home." But while the general guidelines on cooking for the sick has long roots, Shapiro says that their manifestation in early American cookbooks reflects the rise of "scientific cookery" rooted in the Industrial Revolution and Progressive Era — when science was overhauling everything from charity to motherhood to food. "The home itself was a site for the reform movement, and the role of a woman was to raise up a new American family," Shapiro explains. "And you do it in great part through sanitation, hygiene and proper nutrition." But as for the actual science of this scientific approach? Well, they were working off a somewhat limited playbook. "Fats, carbohydrates and proteins were known by the mid 1800s," explains Patty Keane, president of the New Mexico Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics, "but vitamins and minerals really weren't discovered until the early 1900s." As New York University nutrition professor Marion Nestle notes, these bland, liquid-like diets were considered easier to digest by people who were too sick to eat — an idea that is still popular. And, Nestle argues, one that should be abandoned. "If people feel like eating and have a functioning intestinal tract, they are better off with real food." But, as dietitian and nutritionist Patty Keane says, while getting foods with the proper nutrient profile can help with everything from healing wounds to bolstering immunity, that's not the whole picture. We can now tailor meals to specific medical conditions, but having them prepared and delivered with care, as outlined in these early manuals, is an equally important part of healing — even in modern practice. "While the nutrition science may have changed a tremendous amount," acknowledges Keane, "we know that there is much more to the provision of meals to promote wellness and healing than the food itself." And while formulating recipes for optimal healing has become the provenance of health professionals rather than home cookbooks, caring and concern is still very much on the menu. Deena Prichep is a freelance print and radio journalist based in Portland, Ore.
News Article | April 18, 2017
CHAMPAIGN, Ill. -- People who closely eyeball nutrition labels tend to eat differently than less-discerning diners in one key regard, according to research from a University of Illinois expert in food and nutrition policy and consumer food preferences and behaviors. Although nutrition-label users and non-nutrition-label users eat roughly the same amount of food, the two groups diverge when it comes to the quality of the food they eat, says a new paper co-written by Brenna Ellison, a professor of agriculture and consumer economics at Illinois. "Research has often concluded that people who use nutrition labels eat better. But we don't necessarily talk about what better means," Ellison said. "Is it eating less food, or is it eating better food? This study looks at people's plates and considers both what they selected to eat and what they actually ate in an effort to determine which difference" - volume or quality - "is occurring." To examine the relationship between label use and food selection, servings and consumption, Ellison and co-author Mary J. Christoph of the University of Minnesota combined survey and photographic data of the lunch plates of college students at two different university dining halls. Food selection, servings and consumption were assessed using digital photography, a method with strong reliability for validating portion sizes compared with weighing food and visual estimation. "In terms of measuring and evaluating the plates, we had students who built their own plates because it was a self-serve dining environment," Ellison said. "Diners were only eligible if they were just sitting down to eat. It couldn't be someone who was halfway through their meal, which would misrepresent what they were eating and skew the results." Based on the meals assessed, the quantity of foods served and consumed were roughly similar between the two groups. There were, however, distinct differences in the types of foods plated and consumed within MyPlate food categories between those who tended to read nutrition labels and those who didn't, the researchers found. The results indicate that a greater proportion of nutrition-label users selected more fruits, vegetables and beans, and fewer potatoes and refined grains, compared with non-label users. In addition, fewer label users selected fried foods and foods with added sugars, Ellison said. "We find that it's more about the types of food rather than the quantity of the food," Ellison said. "The amount of food between label users and non-label users was roughly the same amount. It's the differences in quality that are more prevalent than the sheer amount of food selected." Using digital photography also provided a more objective assessment of food selection, servings and consumption compared with self-reporting because "you don't have to rely on students remembering how much of each food they ate," Ellison said. "That's one big advantage to this study. Another one is that diners did not interact with our data collectors until after their plate was built. So our data collection methods shouldn't have affected what they chose. For example, people weren't picking more salad because they knew there was going to be a picture taken of their plate." Participants were further surveyed on socio-demographic and behavioral variables such as gender, body mass index, exercise frequency and nutrition education to better assess the possible link between label use and food selection, servings and consumption, according to the paper. Examining nutrition labels is often recommended by doctors and dietitians to improve food choices, but choice does not always translate to consumption. Furthermore, evidence on the effectiveness of labels is mixed, and few studies can identify how labels actually influence behavior, Ellison said. "Previous research has focused on portion control for weight loss or weight management, generally eating less. But, more-recent research indicates this may not be the most effective message. By eating less, consumers may feel deprived, or even 'hangry,' which can make it difficult to sustain long-term dietary behaviors," she said. "Newer research indicates that eating less of certain types of foods, rather than all foods, may matter more." Although the results show label users eat differently than non-users, the implications of the research suggest there may be a need for greater consumption of fruit, vegetables, beans, whole grains and low-fat dairy among both groups. In addition to posting labels, Ellison said dining facilities may want to increase offerings of nutrient-dense foods (whole grains and vegetables, for example) or consider product reformulations that creatively incorporate these foods to encourage healthy eating behaviors. But Ellison warned that the study's findings should still be cautiously interpreted, as the conclusions are based on only one meal. The paper will appear in the Journal of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics. The paper "A Cross-Sectional Study of the Relationship between Nutrition Label Use and Food Selection, Servings, and Consumption in a University Dining Setting" is available online.
News Article | May 17, 2017
You may have heard that Americans waste more than 38 million tons of food each year, or that the value all this discarded food adds up to about $165 billion annually. That’s bad enough, but consider this: If all that lost food were put on people’s plates, it would be enough to provide more than 190 million adults with 2,000 calories of energy every day, according to a new report in the Journal of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics. Keep in mind that these calories are being squandered in a country where 14% of households sometimes have trouble putting food on the table. “U.S. landfills represent vast repositories of lost nutrition,” the report’s authors wrote. According to their calculations, the food Americans threw away in 2012 would have provided 2,000 calories each day to more than 80% of the nation’s adults. To make matters even worse, nutritious food was more likely to be squandered than actual junk food. “Vegetables, fruits, seafood, and dairy products are wasted at disproportionately high rates,” wrote the researchers, a group led by registered dietitian and Ph.D. candidate Marie Spiker of the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health. Here’s a look at some of their findings: The food wasted in 2012 contained enough vitamin A to meet the daily requirements of 138 million women and or 108 million men. (For the sake of comparison, there were about 119 million adult women and 116 million adult men in the United States that year.) If that wasted food had been distributed to Americans who needed it, it would have allowed 998 million women or 641 million men to make up the gap between their actual vitamin A consumption and the amount they should have consumed based on the Institute of Medicine’s Recommended Dietary Allowances, or RDAs. Our bodies use vitamin A to maintain vision, our immune systems and our reproductive systems. Organs including the heart, lungs and kidneys rely on it too. Americans’ 2012 food waste contained enough calcium to satisfy the entire daily requirements of 90 million women or 90 million men. It also would have been enough to erase the calcium deficiency for the equivalent of 680 million American women. (Women between the ages of 51 and 70 require more calcium than men.) Calcium is the mineral that makes bones and teeth strong. It also plays a role in moving blood throughout the circulatory system, transmitting electrical signals between the brain and the rest of the body, and allowing hormones and enzymes to facilitate all sorts of essential functions. The food wasted in 2012 had enough magnesium to give 86 million women or 67 million men their entire recommended amount. Based on the eating habits of actual Americans, that magnesium would have made it possible for 741 million American women or 606 million American men who were magnesium-deprived to meet the government’s standard. Magnesium allows muscles and nerves to function properly, and it helps the body keep blood pressure and blood sugar in check. The mineral is also an ingredient in our bones, in protein and in DNA. About 74 million women or 49 million men could have been kept in good digestive health with the fiber in food that Americans wasted in 2012. If that fiber had gone to women who needed some extra, an additional 207 million of them would have met the Institute of Medicine’s threshold; if it had gone to American men, 104 million of them would have closed the gap. Dietary fiber keeps your cholesterol, blood sugar and weight in check. It also keeps your bowel movements regular. Wasted food contained enough iron for 93 million women or 209 million men to satisfy their full daily requirement. Had that food gone to American women with iron deficiencies, it would have allowed 379 million of them to meet their RDAs. Without iron, our blood cells wouldn’t be able to ferry oxygen from the lungs to the rest of our bodies. The mineral is an essential component of hemoglobin and myoglobin, two proteins that do this job. The food wasted by Americans in 2012 contained enough vitamin E to allow 76 million women or 76 million men to get their full recommended daily dose of the nutrient. If that wasted food had been offered to those who needed it, 156 million women or 242 million men could have closed the gap between the amount of vitamin E they got and the amount the government recommended. Vitamin E is an antioxidant that helps cells weather the damage inflicted by harmful molecules called free radicals. Vitamin E also fuels the immune system, among other useful functions. The report also tallied other nutrients, including potassium, vitamin C and vitamin D. You can read the full report here. Follow me on Twitter @LATkarenkaplan and "like" Los Angeles Times Science & Health on Facebook. The human nose has been underrated for 150 years, but science is setting the record straight Four things Americans should know about Dr. Scott Gottlieb, the new head of the FDA When it comes to life expectancy in America, not all counties are created equal
News Article | February 28, 2017
Bethesda, MD (Feb. 27, 2017) -- Patients with obesity need a multidisciplinary approach to achieve a healthy weight, and the American Gastroenterological Association (AGA) believes that gastroenterologists are in a unique position to lead the care team. To provide gastroenterologists with a comprehensive, multi-disciplinary process to guide and personalize innovative obesity care for safe and effective weight management, including a model for how to operationalize business issues, AGA has created an Obesity Practice Guide. The program includes an obesity program to help gastroenterologists manage their patients with obesity, as well as a framework focused on the business operational issues related to the management of obese patients, which are published in Clinical Gastroenterology and Hepatology, the clinical practice journal of the American Gastroenterological Association. "The epidemic of obesity continues at alarming rates with a high burden to our economy and society," said Sarah Streett, MD, an author of both papers, chair of the AGA Institute Practice Management and Economics Committee, and clinical associate professor and director of IBD Stanford University School of Medicine, CA. "The American Gastroenterological Association understands the importance of embracing obesity as a chronic, relapsing disease and supports a multidisciplinary approach to the management of obesity." POWER: Practice Guide on Obesity and Weight Management, Education and Resources1 Obesity is a major modifiable cause of diseases of the digestive tract that routinely goes unaddressed. Gastrointestinal disorders resulting from obesity are more frequent and often present sooner than type 2 diabetes mellitus and cardiovascular disease, which means gastroenterologists have an opportunity to address obesity and provide effective therapy for their patients. Patients who are overweight or obese are often seen by gastroenterologists due to gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD) and its associated risks of Barrett's esophagus and esophageal cancer, gallstone disease, non-alcoholic fatty liver disease and non-alcoholic steatohepatitis, and colon cancer. As internists, specialists in digestive disorders and endoscopists, gastroenterologists are in a unique position to play an important role in the multidisciplinary treatment of obesity. "We created the practice guide on obesity and weight management to help gastroenterologists develop a multidisciplinary team and obesity care model for their practice, including patient goal setting, readiness assessment, evaluation, and treatment with diet, medication, and bariatric endoscopy and surgery," said Andres Acosta, MD, PhD, lead author of the paper and assistant professor of medicine, Clinical Enteric Neuroscience Translational and Epidemiological Research (C.E.N.T.E.R.), division of gastroenterology and hepatology, Mayo Clinic, Rochester, MN. "It is our hope that by working in a team-based approach, gastroenterologists can guide and personalize obesity care for safe and effective weight management for our patients." The Society of American Gastrointestinal and Endoscopic Surgeons (SAGES), The Obesity Society (TOS), and North American Society for Pediatric Gastroenterology, Hepatology and Nutrition (NASPGHAN) contributed content to the POWER program, which was endorsed with input by the American Society for Gastrointestinal Endoscopy (ASGE), American Society for Metabolic and Bariatric Surgery (ASMBS), American Association for the Study of Liver Diseases (AASLD), Obesity Medicine Association (OMA) and Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics (AND). Episode-of-Care Framework for the Management of Obesity: Moving Towards High Value, High Quality Care2 The treatment of obesity needs a collaborative approach involving multiple stakeholders. AGA established an obesity episode of care model to develop a framework to support value-based management of patients with obesity, focusing on the provision of non-surgical and endoscopic services. The framework will help gastroenterology practices assess their ability to participate in and implement an episode of care for obesity, and understand the essentials of coding and billing for these services. The goal of episode framework is to provide gastroenterologists with strategies to obtain compensation for high value care, in a flexible format that can be adapted to the resources of both large and small practices. It is essential that data coordination take place between all members of the multi-disciplinary team who are providing therapeutic services to the patient to ensure high value continuity of care. The American Society for Metabolic and Bariatric Surgery (ASMBS), American Psychological Association (APA), American Pharmacists Association (APhA), and Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics (AND) contributed to the obesity episode of care framework. 1 Acosta A, Streett S et al.. White Paper AGA: POWER -- Practice Guide on Obesity and Weight Management, Education and Resources. Clinical Gastroenterology and Hepatology (2017), doi: 10.1016/j.cgh.2016.10.023. http://www.cghjournal.org/article/S1542-3565(16)30988-0/fulltext 2 Brill JV et al. White Paper AGA: An Episode-of-Care Framework for the Management of Obesity: Moving Towards High Value, High Quality Care. Clinical Gastroenterology and Hepatology (2017), doi: 10.1016/j.cgh.2017.02.002. http://www.cghjournal.org/article/S1542-3565(17)30146-5/pdf The American Gastroenterological Association is the trusted voice of the GI community. Founded in 1897, the AGA has grown to more than 16,000 members from around the globe who are involved in all aspects of the science, practice and advancement of gastroenterology. The AGA Institute administers the practice, research and educational programs of the organization. http://www. . The mission of Clinical Gastroenterology and Hepatology is to provide readers with a broad spectrum of themes in clinical gastroenterology and hepatology. This monthly peer-reviewed journal includes original articles as well as scholarly reviews, with the goal that all articles published will be immediately relevant to the practice of gastroenterology and hepatology. For more information, visit http://www. . Like AGA and Clinical Gastroenterology and Hepatology on Facebook. Join AGA on LinkedIn. Follow us on Twitter @AmerGastroAssn. Check out our videos on YouTube.
News Article | May 15, 2017
Discarded food contains a significant amount of nutrients that could be used to help many Americans meet daily requirements, according to a new study in the Journal of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics Philadelphia, PA, May 15, 2017 -- The extent of food waste in America is a cause for serious concern. It is estimated that around 1,217 calories per person per day are squandered. A new study in the Journal of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics looks beyond the caloric value of food waste and focuses on the nutritional value of the food we throw away. Investigators found that discarded food contains large amounts of key nutrients like vitamin D, fiber, and potassium that could help people get the food they need to meet their daily recommended intake. In 2014, 14% of American households suffered from food insecurity and an additional 5% experienced a shortage of resources that forced them to skip meals or reduce their food consumption. Across the population, Americans are not getting the recommended intakes of certain nutrients including dietary fiber; calcium; potassium; and vitamins A, C, D, and E. At the same time, Americans continue to waste food at an alarming rate throughout the food supply chain. It's estimated that 31-40% of the post-harvest food supply is discarded. This study was the first to demonstrate the substantial amount of nutrients, including many under-consumed nutrients, wasted due to food discarded at the retail and consumer levels of the U.S. food supply. Quantifying the loss can motivate related investments and support the case for registered dietitian nutritionist engagement with these efforts. The estimates can additionally serve as a baseline for tracking intervention impacts. Data from the National Nutrient Database for Standard Reference were used to calculate the nutritional value of retail and consumer level waste of 213 commodities in the USDA Loss-Adjusted Food Availability data series for 27 nutrients in 2012. The study, led by Roni A. Neff, PhD, Program Director at the Johns Hopkins University Center for a Livable Future (CLF), and Assistant Professor, Department of Environmental Health & Engineering, and Marie L. Spiker, MSPH, RD, CLF-Lerner Fellow and Doctoral Candidate, Department of International Health, Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health, found that losses of under-consumed nutrients were significant. Food wasted at the retail and consumer levels of the U.S. food supply in 2012 contained 1,217 kcal, 33 g protein, 5.9 g dietary fiber, 1.7 mcg vitamin D, 286 mg calcium, and 880 mg potassium per capita per day. Using dietary fiber as an example, 5.9 g dietary fiber is 23% of the RDA for women. This is equivalent to the fiber RDA for 74 million adult women. Adult women in 2012 under-consumed dietary fiber by 8.9 g per day, and the amount of wasted fiber is equivalent to this gap for 206.6 million adult women. Data points like this highlight the need for diverse interventions including standardized date labeling (use by, sell by) and consumer education, so that people can utilize the nutrients instead of throwing them in the trash can. According to the authors, perishable foods such as fruits and vegetables are lost at particularly high rates, leading to exceptional losses of under-consumed nutrients. Changes to our food system can reduce agricultural and pre-consumer waste, and play an important role in shaping the amount of food consumers discard. Cultural shifts are also needed to change consumer and industry attitudes. Even if only the top seven most cost-effective food recovery activities were scaled up and only an additional 1.75% of food waste was recovered, this would translate into 2,000 calories per day for 3.3 million adults. "Although only a portion of discarded food can realistically be made available for human consumption, efforts to redistribute surplus foods where appropriate and prevent food waste in the first place could increase the availability of nutrients for Americans, while saving money and natural resources," concluded the authors. "The U.S. has established a target of halving food loss and waste by 2030. This research supports the case for action and for registered dietitian nutritionists to bring their expertise to the effort."
News Article | May 15, 2017
Researchers at the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health's Center for a Livable Future calculated the nutritional value of food wasted in the U.S. at the retail and consumer levels, shining a light on just how much protein, fiber and other important nutrients end up in the landfill in a single year. These lost nutrients are important for healthy diets, and some -- including, dietary fiber, calcium, potassium and vitamin D -- are currently consumed below recommended levels. Nutrient-dense foods like fruits, vegetables, seafood and dairy products are wasted at disproportionately high rates. Previous research estimated that as much as 40 percent of food is wasted nationally, but it wasn't clear before this study how nutritious that food was. While not all wasted food is consumable, a sizeable amount is, leaving researchers and policymakers looking for ways to minimize the amount of good food that gets tossed as millions of Americans go hungry, do not get enough nutrients or do not have access to healthy food options. The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) and Environmental Protection Agency have set a goal of reducing food waste by 50 percent by 2030. The findings will appear online May 15 in the Journal of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics. "Huge quantities of nutritious foods end up in landfills instead of meeting Americans' dietary needs," says study lead author Marie Spiker, MSPH, RD, a CLF-Lerner Fellow at the Johns Hopkins Center for a Livable Future and a doctoral candidate in the Bloomberg School's Department of International Health. "Our findings illustrate how food waste exists alongside inadequate intake of many nutrients." For their study, the researchers calculated the nutritional value of the retail- and consumer-level food waste of 213 commodities in 2012, using data from the USDA's Loss-Adjusted Food Availability data series. The research team, looking at 27 nutrients in all, found that food wasted in the U.S. food supply that year contained 1,217 calories, 33 grams of protein, 5.9 grams of dietary fiber, 1.7 micrograms of vitamin D, 286 milligrams calcium and 880 milligrams potassium per person, per day. Nutrient loss estimates provided by this study could contribute to a baseline for measuring future progress, the authors say. The study also highlights how the amount of nutrients lost to waste compares to nutritional deficits in the typical American diet. For example, dietary fiber is important for maintaining digestive health and is found in grains, vegetables and fruits. Researchers estimate that, in 2012, food wasted each day contained upwards of 1.8 billion grams of dietary fiber, which is comparable to the full recommended intake for dietary fiber for 73.6 million adult women. American women under-consumed dietary fiber by 8.9 grams per day in 2012. The study found that the daily amount of wasted dietary fiber is equivalent to the amount needed to fill this nutritional gap for as many as 206.6 million adult women. Many factors contribute to food waste at both the retail and consumer levels, including the disposal of food due to aesthetic standards, large portion sizes, and management of perishables in fridges and pantries. There is currently great energy around efforts to address waste of food. Preventing waste at the source is considered to be the optimal approach. Strengthening food recovery efforts that bring surplus food to food banks and pantries is also an important area of effort, innovation and impact. "This study offers us new ways of appreciating the value of wasted food. While not all food that is wasted could or should be recovered, it reminds us that we are dumping a great deal of high quality, nutritious food that people could be enjoying," says Roni Neff, PhD, an assistant professor in the Bloomberg School's Department of Environmental Health and Engineering who oversaw the study and directs the CLF's Food System Sustainability & Public Health Program. "We should keep in mind that while food recovery efforts are valuable, food recovery doesn't get to the heart of either the food insecurity problem or the waste problem. We need strategies addressing these challenges at multiple levels." "Wasted Food, Wasted Nutrients: Nutrient loss from wasted food in the US and comparison to gaps in dietary intake" was written by Marie L. Spiker, Hazel A. B. Hiza, Sameer M. Siddiqi and Roni A. Neff. This research was funded by the GRACE Communications Foundation. M. L. Spiker and S. M. Siddiqi were also supported by the CLF-Lerner Fellowship.
News Article | February 23, 2017
CHICAGO, Feb. 23, 2017 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- Eating healthier doesn't mean changing your entire eating pattern overnight. Small changes, made over time, can add up. For National Nutrition Month® 2017, the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics urges everyone to start small – one forkful...
Tuma P.A.,Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics
Journal of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics | Year: 2012
If upheld as constitutional, the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act that passed in 2010 promises to change health care delivery systems in the United States, partly by shifting focus from disease treatment to disease prevention. Registered dietitians (RDs) have already taken an active role in health care areas that stand to be directly affected by provisions in the health care reform bill. However, nutrition's vital role in preventing diseases and conditions potentially could translate to additional opportunities for RDs as a result of this reform. Specific dietetics-related areas targeted by health care reform include medical nutrition therapy for chronic conditions and employee wellness incentive programs. However, dietetics practitioners are not necessarily established in the language of the bill as the essential providers of specific services or as reimbursable practitioners. Thus, although it is possible health care reform could affect demand-and, in turn, supply-of RDs, the actual effect of this legislation is difficult to predict. © 2012 Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics.