142nd APHA Annual Meeting and Exposition

Annual Meeting Recordings are now available for purchase

Food Additives, Contaminants, and America's Health: Opportunities for Nurses

142nd APHA Annual Meeting and Exposition (November 15 - November 19, 2014): http://www.apha.org/events-and-meetings/annual
Monday, November 17, 2014 : 3:15 PM - 3:30 PM

Katie Huffling, MS, RN, CNM , Alliance of Nurses for Healthy Environments, Mount Rainier, MD
Kathy Curtis, LPN , Clean and Healthy New York, Albany, NY
There are currently over 10,000 food additives allowed for use in the United States. Due to outdated, inadequate laws, companies can add over 1,000 additives into the food supply without notifying the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and are using their own scientists to determine if these additives are safe. This problem is compounded by insufficient FDA authority to obtain the information needed for the agency to identify food additives of concern or perform their own assessments. Contaminants that infiltrate the food from packaging are entirely unregulated, and do not appear on the label. With the safety of the US food supply increasingly in the news, nurses need to be aware of this growing public health problem and be able to provide anticipatory guidance to their clients. In this presentation, we will discuss the regulatory problems with food additives and contaminants. We will provide examples of the leading chemical food additives and contaminants and their health implications, such as bisphenol A. We will also provide tools for nurses to incorporate this information into their nursing practice and be effective advocates for the health of their patients and a safe food supply through more protective government policy, institutional procurement and broad market shifts.

Learning Areas:

Advocacy for health and health education
Environmental health sciences
Public health or related nursing

Learning Objectives:
Describe the regulatory issues with food additives and contaminants. Identify tools and resources nurses can use to incorporate the issues of food additives and contaminants into their nursing practice. Explain how nurses can be effective advocates for a safe food supply.

Keyword(s): Food Safety, Public Policy

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: I am a certified nurse-midwife with extensive environmental health experience. I currently direct the Alliance of Nurses for HEalthy Environments and work full-time with the Alliance on environmental health research, education and advocacy campaigns. I have given environmental health presentations to a wide range of nursing and public health organizations and am published in the area of environmental health nursing.
Any relevant financial relationships? No

I agree to comply with the American Public Health Association Conflict of Interest and Commercial Support Guidelines, and to disclose to the participants any off-label or experimental uses of a commercial product or service discussed in my presentation.

Back to: 3394.0: Health Impact of Food Access