Community-Supported Agriculture as a Dietary and Health Improvement Strategy: A Narrative ReviewThis narrative review summarizes the literature regarding community-supported agriculture (CSA) with a focus on its use as a dietary and health improvement strategy. CSA members are typically women, white, highly educated, and affluent. The majority of members are motivated to participate in CSA by a concern for the environment and a desire for locally grown, high-quality, and organic produce. Numerous studies have provided evidence of the economic, community, environmental, and food quality related benefits of CSAs.
Healthy Neighborhood Stores: Key Recommendations for Working with Owners of Small Stores in Communities of High NeedIn recent years, leading public health authorities have recommended improving the retail food environment to make healthier foods more accessible among underserved populations.1-4 Small food stores can contribute to community efforts to promote healthy eating behaviors by providing healthy food options in typically underserved areas.2,5-7 Previous findings from small store interventions have suggested that collaborating with storeowners is important for successful implementation and sustainability of the intervention,8-10 and building relationships with storeowners is a key element in establishing a collaboration.
From Nutrition to Public Policy: Improving Healthy Food Access by Enhancing Farm-to-Table Legislation in LouisianaIncreasing access to healthy foods is one of many strategies that have been recommended by national authorities as a way to improve nutritional outcomes.1-3 Research has shown that the environments in which we live, learn, and work can influence an individual’s diet.4-7 Therefore, increasing the availability of fruits and vegetables (F/V) and decreasing the availability of unhealthy foods may facilitate healthy eating among individuals.8,9 Increased F/V consumption may potentially improve weight status over time10 and lower the risk for other chronic diseases, such as cardiovascular disease,11 diabetes,12 and certain cancers.
Policies and Politics of the US Food Supply“I went to the refrigerator looking for something to eat and I couldn’t find anything. Well, anything healthy, that is.” We often hear this comment when we counsel clients trying to eat a healthy diet. Accessibility is a key reason for why people eat or do not eat a particular food.1 In the article by Miller and colleagues2 the evidence is clear that our “national refrigerator” is limiting our ability to meet the dietary recommendations found in the 2010 Dietary Guidelines.3 One avenue to influence the accessibility of healthy foods and encourage healthy eating is through public policies.
The United States Food Supply Is Not Consistent with Dietary Guidance: Evidence from an Evaluation Using the Healthy Eating Index-2010The US food system is primarily an economic enterprise, with far-reaching health, environmental, and social effects. A key data source for evaluating the many effects of the food system, including the overall quality and extent to which it provides the basic elements of a healthful diet, is the Food Availability Data System. The objective of the present study was to update earlier research that evaluated the extent to which the US food supply aligns with the most recent federal dietary guidance, using the current Healthy Eating Index-2010 (HEI-2010) and food supply data extending through 2010.
An Approach to Monitor Food and Nutrition from “Factory to Fork”Accurate, adequate, and timely food and nutrition information is necessary in order to monitor changes in the US food supply and assess their impact on individual dietary intake.
Position of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics: Food and Water SafetyIt is the position of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics that all people should have access to a safe food and water supply. The Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics supports science-based food and water regulations and recommendations that are applied consistently across all foods and water regulated by all agencies and incorporate traceability and recall to limit food- and waterborne outbreaks. Registered dietitian nutritionists and dietetic technicians, registered, are encouraged to participate in policy decisions, program development, and implementation of a food safety culture.
Is There a Diet for Histamine Intolerance?The incidence of food allergies and intolerances appears to be increasing in the United States in both children and adults. The American Academy of Allergy, Asthma, and Immunology defines a food intolerance (or sensitivity) as an event that affects the digestive system after eating a particular food.1 A food allergy, in comparison, involves the immune system, produces a repeatable response, and can be confirmed with a series of tests.
The Influence of Menu Labeling on Calories Selected or Consumed: A Systematic Review and Meta-AnalysisRecent menu labeling initiatives in North America involve posting the calorie content of standard menu items, sometimes with other nutrients of public health concern, with or without contextual information (such as the recommended daily caloric intake for an average adult) or interpretive information (such as traffic light symbols). It is not clear whether this is an effective method to convey nutrition information to consumers wanting to make more-informed food choices. Of particular concern are those consumers who may be limited in their food and health literacy skills to make informed food choices to meet their dietary needs or goals.
Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics: Revised 2014 Standards of Professional Performance for Registered Dietitian Nutritionists in Management of Food and Nutrition SystemsManagement in food and nutrition systems is presented with an ever-challenging tension between effective utilization of manpower resources, mechanical equipment, financial management, material production, and time constraints to produce optimal products. Management drives opportunities for personal development for multiple levels of its employee workforce. Given an increasing need to deliver high-quality food and services to satisfied customers, the Management in Food and Nutrition Systems Dietetic Practice Group, with guidance from the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics Quality Management Committee, has developed the Revised 2014 Standards of Professional Performance, which replace the 2009 Standards, as a tool for registered dietitian nutritionists working in food and nutrition systems management within health care and non−health care organizations.
The Effects of Dietary Counseling on Children with Food Allergy: A Prospective, Multicenter Intervention StudyAlthough dietary counseling is generally recommended in children with food allergy (FA), its effect on the nutritional status of these patients has not yet been evaluated. Our nonrandomized multicenter prospective intervention study was undertaken to investigate the effects of dietary counseling on children with FA. Anthropometric data, dietary intakes, and laboratory biomarkers of nutritional status were evaluated in children with FA (aged 6 to 36 months) before and after dietary counseling, by multidisciplinary teams composed of pediatricians, dietitians, and nurses.
Severely Restricted Diets in the Absence of Medical Necessity: The Unintended ConsequencesDespite the best efforts of health-focused associations and government agencies to deliver complete nutrition information to the public, the message does not always get interpreted as intended. Discussions of how much energy, fat, or other nutrients should be in the diet can often get translated into an overly simplistic and counterproductive demarcation of which foods and nutrients are “good” and which are “bad.”1 Although consumers' use of food labels is the frequent go-to suggestion as the basis for making healthful food choices, it is not necessarily a concept put into consistent practice, because “the density and design of nutritional information on food and beverage packaging plays a vital role in whether consumers pay attention.”2
The Impact of Variations in a Fact-Based Front-of-Package Nutrition Labeling System on Consumer ComprehensionIn 1990, when the Nutrition Labeling and Education Act1 was enacted, there was a clear need for standardized information on food product packaging. This legislation, an amendment of the Federal Food, Drug and Cosmetic Act of 1938,2 was intended to enable consumers to make more informed food choices to build a healthy diet. In addition to the new requirement for nutrition labeling on most packaged foods, and the creation of uniform definitions used in nutrient content claims, the Nutrition Labeling and Education Act revised health claim regulations allowing manufacturers to print approved health claims on the front of food and beverage product packaging if certain criteria were met.
Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics: Standards of Professional Performance for Registered Dietitian Nutritionists (Competent, Proficient, and Expert) in Sustainable, Resilient, and Healthy Food and Water SystemsSustainability is the ability of a system to be maintained over the long term. Resilience is the ability of a system to withstand disturbances and continue to function in a sustainable manner. Issues of sustainability and resilience apply to all aspects of nutrition and dietetics practice, can be practiced at both the program and systems level, and are broader than any one specific practice setting or individual intervention. Given an increasing need to apply principles of sustainability and resilience to nutrition and dietetics practice, as well as growing interest among the public and by Registered Dietitian Nutritionists of health issues related to food and water systems, the Hunger and Environmental Nutrition Dietetic Practice Group, with guidance from the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics Quality Management Committee, has developed the Standards of Professional Performance as a tool for Registered Dietitian Nutritionists working in sustainable, resilient, and healthy food and water systems to assess their current skill levels and to identify areas for further professional development in this emerging practice area.
Use of the Go-for-Green Nutrition Labeling System in Military Dining Facilities Is Associated with Lower Fat IntakePoint-of-purchase nutrition labeling is a potential tool to help consumers choose healthier foods. The objectives of our study were to survey soldiers on their use of the Go-for-Green nutrition labeling system in dining facilities and compare characteristics of users and nonusers. The study population consisted of 299 US Army active duty soldiers at two US Army installations. The frequency of use of food labels and characteristics were calculated and differences in characteristics of label users and nonusers were compared using χ2 and regression analyses.
Was There a Recent Update to the FDA Food Code?The US Food and Drug Administration (FDA), in conjunction with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and the Food Safety Inspection Service (FSIS) of the US Department of Agriculture (USDA), released the 2013 Food Code (8th edition) this past fall. The FDA issues new editions of the Food Code every 4 years and supplements are released every 2 years as guidelines are revised to reflect the latest food-related research. The revisions contained in this edition reflect changes, additions, deletions, and format modifications listed in the Supplement to the 2009 FDA Food Code and recommendations developed during the 2012 biennial meeting of the Conference for Food Protection.
Trends in Farm-to-Table from a Sociological PerspectiveResearch indicates a growing trend in consumers' preference for local foods1-5 and, by association, sustainable growing practices. Experts in fields spanning academic sociology to business say different definitions for local and sustainability exist in the minds of consumers, but changes observed in restaurants and farmers' markets alike suggest a shifting paradigm rather than a fad, as business follows demand for the concept en gros. Surveys suggest consumers associate the term local with a number of positive attributes, ranging from food that is more nutritious to more supportive of their community's economy.
Position of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics: Nutrition Security in Developing Nations: Sustainable Food, Water, and HealthIt is the position of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics that all people should have consistent access to an appropriately nutritious diet of food and water, coupled with a sanitary environment, adequate health services, and care that ensure a healthy and active life for all household members. The Academy supports policies, systems, programs, and practices that work with developing nations to achieve nutrition security and self-sufficiency while being environmentally and economically sustainable.
Is There a Diet for “Yeast Allergy”?THERE ARE OVER 20 SPECIES OF Candida that can cause a fungal infection or candidiasis in humans.1 The most common species, Candida albicans commonly resides on the skin, mouth, intestinal tract, vagina, and other moist, warm, and dark areas of the body. Candida is often called yeast, but it is a dimorphic fungus, meaning that it grows as a yeast form in a carbohydrate media and forms hyphae (strands) when the medium is low in nutrients. For this reason, Candida is also referred to as a psuedoyeast.
Practice Paper of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics Abstract: Promoting Ecological Sustainability within the Food SystemRegistered dietitians (RDs) and dietetic technicians, registered (DTRs) can implement environmentally responsible practices in their workplace and personal lives. RDs and DTRs who conserve natural resources while minimizing environmental degradation will help maintain sustainability of the food system, which requires knowledge of the external costs of operational and personal decisions. These external costs include energy to produce, transport, and process food; water for food production, preparation, and sanitation; removal of air pollutants; and waste management.
Environmental and Individual Factors Affecting Menu Labeling Utilization: A Qualitative Research StudyObesity is a prominent public health concern that disproportionally affects low-income and minority populations. Recent policies mandating the posting of calories on menus in fast-food chain restaurants have not proven to uniformly influence food choice. This qualitative research study used focus groups to study individual and environmental factors affecting the use of these menu labels among low-income minority populations. Ten focus groups targeting low-income residents (n=105) were held at various community organizations throughout New York City over a 9-month period in 2011.
Determinants of Food Label Use Differ by SexAlthough the Nutrition Facts label has been a requirement on food packages for more than 20 years, few studies have conducted comprehensive assessments of food label use. The purpose of this study was to assess the demographic and psychosocial correlates of food label use using a comprehensive approach. A sample of 1,382 males and females (n=573 and n=809, respectively) aged 19 to 70 years was drawn from the 2005-2006 National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey. The food label Check and Use subscales are the sums of multiple questions on frequency of checking and using each separate component on a Nutrition Facts label.