April 19, 2014

Are America’s Nutrition Professionals in the Pocket of Big Food?

ANDReportCover 791x1024 231x300 Are Americas Nutrition Professionals in the Pocket of Big Food?

Health Impact News Editor Comments: We have previously reported here at Health Impact News how the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics, formerly the American Dietetic Association (AND/ADA), has tried to create a monopoly on food and nutrition information, restricting free speech by those who disagree with them. The Alliance for Natural Health has reported on this (See: Dietetics Board Wants to Limit Free Speech and Your Choices for Independent Nutrition Information). Michael Ellsberg has also written about this on Forbes (See: Exclusive Leaked Documents: American Dietetic Association is Intentionally Using State Legislatures to Block Alternative Nutrition Providers and Restrict Free Speech).

Attorney and food rights activist Michele Simon has just completed a new report, available free online, titled: And Now a Word from Our Sponsors: New Report from Eat Drink Politics.

From AppetiteForProfit.com:

Public health attorney and author Michele Simon asks: Are America’s nutrition professionals in the pocket of Big Food? While the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics’ 74,000-member trade group partners with the likes of Coke and Hershey’s, the nation’s health continues to suffer from poor diet.

The largest trade group of nutrition professionals—the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics—has a serious credibility problem. In a damning report released today, industry watchdog Eat Drink Politics examines the various forms of corporate sponsorship by Big Food that are undermining the integrity of those professionals most responsible for educating Americans about healthy eating.

The report details, for example, how registered dietitians can earn continuing education units from Coca-Cola, in which they learn that sugar is not a problem for children and how Nestlé, the world’s largest food company can pay $50,000 to host a two-hour “nutrition symposium” at the Academy’s annual meeting. Additional disturbing findings from the report include:

  • Beginning in 2001, the Academy listed 10 food industry sponsors; the 2011 annual report lists 38, a more than three-fold increase;
  • Companies on the Academy’s list of approved continuing education providers include Coca-Cola, Kraft Foods, Nestlé, and PepsiCo;
  • At the 2012 annual meeting, 18 organizations – less than five percent of all exhibitors – captured 25 percent of the total exhibitor space. Only two out of the 18 represented whole, non-processed foods;
  • The Corn Refiners Association (lobbyists for high fructose corn syrup) sponsored three “expo impact” sessions at the 2012 annual meeting;
  • A majority of registered dietitians surveyed found three current Academy sponsors “unacceptable” (Coca-Cola, Mars, and PepsiCo);
  • 80 percent of registered dietitians said sponsorship implies Academy endorsement of that company and their products;
  • The Academy has not supported controversial nutrition policies that might upset corporate sponsors, such as limits on soft drink sizes, soda taxes, or GMO labels;
  • Sponsors and their activities appear to violate the Academy’s own sponsorship guidelines.

Among the report’s recommendations are for the Academy to: 1) provide greater transparency on corporate funding sources; 2) gather input from all members on corporate sponsorship; 3) reject all corporate-sponsored education; and 4) provide better leadership on controversial nutrition policy issues. Registered dietitian and Academy member Andy Bellatti, who has long criticized his professional group’s conflicted corporate sponsorships said:

Michele Simon’s report on the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics is thoroughly researched and expertly points out the different ways in which the nation’s leading nutrition organization harms its reputation, efficacy, and members by forming partnerships with food companies that care more about selling products than they do about improving the health of Americans. Anyone concerned about public health will realize that the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics is in dire need of systemic change if it hopes to take a leadership role and be taken seriously as the home base of the nation’s nutrition experts.

Report links:

Contact: Michele Simon at (510) 465-0322 or Michele@EatDrinkPolitics.com

0 commentsback to post

Other articlesgo to homepage

Diet Soda Sales Plummet as Consumers’ Understanding of Deadly Health Risks Grow

Diet Soda Sales Plummet as Consumers’ Understanding of Deadly Health Risks Grow

Soda consumption is now in “freefall,” having dropped to its lowest point since 1995, with diet sodas taking the greatest hit.

One of the largest studies of its kind found that drinking just two diet drinks a day can increase your risk of an early death from heart disease by 50 percent. Previous research looking at aspartame toxicity also found a clear association between aspartame consumption and non-Hodgkin’s Lymphoma and leukemia.

Obesity Now Threatens to Overtake Hunger as Global Health Concern Number One

Obesity Now Threatens to Overtake Hunger as Global Health Concern Number One

In 1950, the number of starving individuals on Earth was estimated to be around 700 million; 100 million people, primarily in rich countries, were obese. By 2010, the world’s hungry had marginally grown to 800 million, while the number of obese citizens of the world had exploded to 500 million. Estimates suggest that by 2030, more than one billion people, worldwide, will fall into the obese category.

Illinois Legislators Back Off Raw Milk Ban After Consumer Outrage

Illinois Legislators Back Off Raw Milk Ban After Consumer Outrage

Under current Illinois law, farmers can sell an unlimited amount of raw milk on the farm without a permit. Legislators and health officials were working hard to completely banish farm-to-consumer agreements in some sneaky ways. This was not lost on Illinois’ thriving raw milk market.

Now, a proposed bill in Illinois banning the sale and distribution of natural or “raw” milk, has come to a screeching halt this session after legislators heard from thousands of natural milk supporters.

The Health Benefits of Maple Syrup: Why You Should Replace Processed Sugar with Maple Syrup

The Health Benefits of Maple Syrup: Why You Should Replace Processed Sugar with Maple Syrup

Maple syrup is one of the many wonders of the world and far more than a simple sweetener. Maple syrup is not only rich in essential nutrients such as manganese as well as zinc, but 34 new beneficial compounds discovered just a few years ago have been confirmed to play a key role in human health.

Antioxidants found in maple syrup have anti-cancer, anti-bacterial, and anti-diabetic properties.

Soy-Based Formula Linked To Seizures In Children

Soy-Based Formula Linked To Seizures In Children

Phytoestrogens in soy-based formulas are known to carry greater risks than benefits for infants. Babies fed soy-based formula had 13,000 to 22,000 times more isoflavones in their blood than babies fed milk-based formula. New data published in PLoS One shows that consumption of soy formula may also be associated with a higher rate of seizures in children. In addition, while true cancer of the prostate, carcinoma, is seldom seen in infants and children, other forms of malignant tumors may develop and more cases are appearing in developed nations where the link appears to center around soy infant formula.

read more


Get the news right in your inbox!