Online Program

Should sustainability be a consideration in the Dietary Guidelines for Americans?

Monday, November 2, 2015 : 10:30 a.m. - 10:50 a.m.

Kim Robien, PhD, RD, Department of Exercise and Nutrition Sciences, Milken Institute School of Public Health, George Washington University, Washington, DC
The Dietary Guidelines for Americans has traditionally focused specifically on nutrition-related health outcomes.  However, given the increasing pressures on the food system, including climate change and population growth, there is a growing awareness of the need to consider long-term sustainability of the food system and population-level food security when setting dietary guidance and the resulting federal food policy.  The 2015 Dietary Guidelines Advisory Committee was the first to propose consideration of food system sustainability when formulating the Dietary Guidelines for Americans.  This move, however, has been met with resistance from certain sectors of food producers, and even prompted some members of Congress to insert language into the omnibus FY2015 appropriations law directing the Secretary of Agriculture to avoid addressing production practices and environmental factors in the 2015 Dietary Guidelines for Americans, and continue the practice of focusing specifically on nutrition-related health outcomes.  This overview presentation will review the charge to the Dietary Guidelines Advisory Committee, describe how the Dietary Guidelines are developed and used, and provide an overview of the issues related to inclusion of sustainability in the Dietary Guidelines for Americans.   Brazil and the Netherlands have already incorporated sustainability considerations in their dietary guidelines, and their different approaches will be described in this session.

Learning Areas:

Public health or related laws, regulations, standards, or guidelines

Learning Objectives:
Describe the process of developing the Dietary Guidelines for Americans, and how they are used Explain the connection between dietary guidelines and sustainable food systems in relation to public health Compare the different approaches to sustainability considerations by the Brazilian and Dutch Dietary Guidelines

Keyword(s): Public Health Policy, Sustainability

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: I teach and conduct research related to public health nutrition, food policy and sustainable food systems at the Milken Institute School of Public Health at George Washington University. I have published several peer-reviewed publications related to the role of public health professionals in food system sustainability, and have spoken at previous scientific meetings on this topic.
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.