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Tracing the impacts of food and nutrition policies

June 11, 2018

Many policies are being implemented or considered to try to steer people toward healthier food choices. The Nutrition 2018 meeting will feature studies that evaluate the impacts of existing policies and seek to inform the design of future ones.

Nutrition 2018 is the inaugural flagship meeting of the American Society for Nutrition held June 9-12, 2018 at the Hynes Convention Center in Boston. Contact the media team for abstracts, images and interviews, or to obtain a free press pass to attend the meeting.

Tracking existing nutrition programs

Children over the age of 5 living in WIC households show healthier dietary patterns
The Special Supplemental Nutrition Program for Women, Infants, and Children (WIC) provides food and other assistance for low-income women and their children under age 5. In a new study, researchers found that boys between the ages of 12-18 living in WIC households ate significantly more fruits and vegetables than children of the same age from non-WIC households with similar income levels. Also, children over 5 years old living in Hispanic households receiving WIC consumed less sugar-sweetened beverages than children in non-WIC Hispanic households. Stephanie Nicole Steeves, Arizona State University, will present this research on Monday, June 11, from 4:15-4:30 p.m. in the Hynes Convention Center, Room 306 (abstract).

Understanding local government efforts to increase access to healthy foods
Recent public health efforts have encouraged local communities to support healthy eating by increasing access to affordable, healthy foods. A new Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) study assesses incentives offered by US towns and cities to help food retailers offer more healthy food options in their communities. The study reveals that most municipalities offered incentives for farmers markets and other produce vendors but fewer offered incentives to open new supermarkets or help existing smaller stores offer more healthy options. Sam Lange, Oak Ridge Institute for Science and Education (ORISE) Fellow at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, will present this research on Monday, June 11, from 8 a.m.-3 p.m. in the Hynes Convention Center Auditorium (poster 99) (abstract).

Informing proposed nutrition policy

Researchers test design strategies for sodium warning labels
Some governments are considering requiring restaurants to post warning labels next to menu items that contain more than a day's recommended intake of sodium. Researchers recently tested a variety of designs for such labels in a series of randomized controlled experiments. The results suggest sodium warning labels can increase sodium knowledge and affect perceptions, particularly when a stop sign or traffic light scheme with "sodium warning" text is used to indicate when sodium levels exceed recommendations, though it remains unclear whether these labels will influence actual food choices. Aviva Musicus, Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health, will present this research on Monday, June 11, from 8 a.m.-3 p.m. in the Hynes Convention Center, Exhibit Hall D (poster 849) (abstract).

Model estimates how banning trans fats could impact health in Australia
As a US ban on trans fats in processed foods goes into effect this year, other countries have been considering similar bans. In a new study, Australian researchers estimate that banning trans fats in that country would reduce health disparities, avert tens of thousands of deaths related to ischemic heart disease and save the country more than a billion dollars in health care costs. Jason Wu, University of New South Wales, will present this research on Monday, June 11, from 8 a.m.-3 p.m. in the Hynes Convention Center Auditorium (poster 173) (abstract).

Please note that abstracts presented at Nutrition 2018 were evaluated and selected by a committee of experts but have not generally undergone the same peer review process required for publication in a scientific journal. As such, the findings presented should be considered preliminary until a peer-reviewed publication is available.
About Nutrition 2018

Nutrition 2018 is the inaugural flagship meeting of the American Society for Nutrition held June 9-12, 2018 at the Hynes Convention Center in Boston. It is the national venue for more than 3,000 top researchers, practitioners and other professionals to announce exciting research findings and explore their implications for practice and policy. Scientific symposia address the latest advances in cellular and physiological nutrition and metabolism, clinical and translational nutrition, global and public health, population science, and food science and systems. #Nutrition2018

About the American Society for Nutrition (ASN)

ASN is the preeminent professional organization for nutrition research scientists and clinicians around the world. Founded in 1928, the society brings together the top nutrition researchers, medical practitioners, policy makers and industry leaders to advance our knowledge and application of nutrition. ASN publishes four peer-reviewed journals and provides education and professional development opportunities to advance nutrition research, practice and education.

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Nutrition 2018

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