Dietary Reference Intakes (DRIs) are a set of nutrient reference values, developed in the US, that are used to assess and plan the nutrient intake of healthy individuals.
This episode is one of our Premium-exclusive AMA (ask me anything) episodes, where we answer questions submitted by Premium subscribers.
To mark the 500th episode of the podcast, Danny and Alan take a look at some of the current outstanding questions in nutrition science, what areas have largely been resolved, and how their own thinking has evolved and changed over time.
This brings them into areas such as personalized nutrition, ultra-processed foods, time-restricted eating, salt & health, and the difference between being “evidence-based” and “reference-based”.
Ciarán Forde is a Professor in Sensory Science and Eating Behavior at Wageningen University in the Netherlands.
In 1985 a paper titled “Sick Individuals and Sick Populations” was published in the International Journal of Epidemiology. In this episode, Danny and Alan discuss the central themes of the paper, why they are so crucial to understand, and what this means for our understanding of diet and chronic disease prevention.
In the UK, there is a threefold higher incidence of type 2 diabetes in UK African and Caribbean (AfC) communities, compared to the general population. And ethnic inequalities in type 2 diabetes treatment and outcomes have been documented. Differences in outcomes relate to physiological differences as well as pragmatic issues and structural barriers. Professor Louise Goff has done pioneering work in relation to both aspects.
So is personalized nutrition superior to standard dietary advice? Let’s find out…
How much fiber do we actually need? What are current fiber recommendations based on? What outcomes have the strongest evidence for benefit? Should we have targets for fiber sub-types? Are some types of fiber “better” than others? Do functional fibers added to food products still retain the benefits we see with dietary fiber?
With a number of countries having implemented a range of taxes or health levies, what lessons can we learn from these? And what does the best public health nutrition currently tell us about the likely effectiveness of different policies or interventions?
Over the past decade, the increasing uptake and acceptance of the Nova food processing classification system has placed focus on one of the categories in Nova; ultra-processed foods (UPFs). Ultra-processed foods (UPFs) are products created from deconstructed (and recombined) food components, usually with the goal of creating a highly palatable, convenient, and profitable product. This typically means such products are high in nutrients of content (e.g. sugar, sodium, saturated fat, etc.). But in addition, they have other characteristics that may make them detrimental to health, particularly when they replace unprocessed or minimally processed foods in the diet. Dr. Gyorgy Scrinis, is on the podcast to discuss his work in the area.
What does the current evidence tell us about the exact effect of marketing on food choices? And beyond that, what strategies are likely to yield the best results in terms of mitigating the harms of food marketing on eating behaviour, particularly in children and adolescents? To help answer these questions, subject area expert Prof. Emma Boyland is on the podcast to discuss what is currently known.
Climate change has the potential to negatively impact the nutrient value of plants, soil organisms, food stuffs, via a variety of ways. Climate change puts food supplies at risk. Floods, droughts, more intense hurricanes, heatwaves and wildfires can drive down crop yields, destroy livestock, and interfere with the transport of food. And rising carbon dioxide levels from human activity can make staple crops like rice and wheat less nutritious.
It has become common rhetoric for those promoting various types of diets to suggest that dietary guidelines published by government departments are at best, unhealthy, or at worst, causative in driving obesity and chronic disease in the population.
Often the claims is that following these guidelines actually harms health, rather than promote it. And the guidelines are simply a result of industry forces, long-standing bias, and shoddy science.
But do these claims hold up to scrutiny?
Clearly the food choices one makes over time directly impacts health. However, choices are not made in a vacuum; that is, they are not always concious decisions made for rational reasons based on free will. Rather, the choices we make about food are shaped by the contexts within which they are made. The term “food environment” is used to describe the physical, economic, political and socio-cultural contexts in which choices are made about acquiring, preparing and consuming food.
This Statement will discuss current evidence for nutrient deficiencies in the developed world. Particular attention will be placed on iron, vitamin D, zinc, folate (vitamin B9), and iodine.
Dr. Clare Pettinger is a Registered Dietitian, Public Health Nutritionist and experienced educator. Based at the Universtity of Plymouth, UK, Dr. Pettinger is actively engaged in community-focussed research around food systems, poverty and social justice. She is an enthusiastic ‘sustainability advocate’ involved in promoting environmentally sustainable diets for nutrition professionals and Allied Health Professioinals.
Is organic food healthier than non-organic food? Is there a difference between organic and conventional food? Let’s examine the evidence…
Guest InformationProf. Jason Gill, PhD Professor Jason Gill is a Professor of Cardiometabolic Health in the Institute of Cardiovascular and Medical Sciences at the University of Glasgow. He leads an active multi-disciplinary research group investigating the effects of exercise and diet on the prevention and management of vascular and metabolic diseases from the molecular to the whole-body level. He is a past Chair of the British Association of Sport and Exercise Sciences (BASES) Division of Physical Activity for Health and a member of the development groups for the Scottish Intercollegiate Guidelines Network (SIGN) guidelines for the prevention and treatment of …
Today’s Topic in Focus: Public Health Policy vs. Individual Responsibility [07:29] In this episode Danny and Alan discuss the evidence for public health nutrition interventions, how health inequalities are driven by socioeconomic factors, and how ideology and simplistic rhetoric about “personal responsibility” can get in the way. References: Rose, 2001 – Sick individuals and sick populations Marmot, 2020 – Society and the slow burn of inequality Mozaffarian et al., 2018 – Role of government policy in nutrition—barriers to and opportunities for healthier eating Wright et al., 2017 – Policy lessons from health taxes: a systematic review of empirical studies Vallgarda, …
Listen on these AppsPodcast TranscriptsGuest InformationProf. Corinna Hawkes Professor Corinna Hawkes has been working for the past 20 years with UN agencies, governments, NGOs and academia at the local, national and international level to support the design of more effective policies throughout the food system to improve diets and prevent malnutrition in all its forms. She is currently Director of the Centre for Food Policy at City, University of London, UK, a Centre dedicated to shaping a more effective food system through education, research and engagement with the world of food policy. In 2018 she was appointed Vice Chair of …