This article is based on the keynote presentation given at the 2013 Better Foods for Better Health Symposium sponsored by the Fondation Mérieux and highlights lessons learned and pathways forward in using science to develop policy, including regulations. Key lessons include that science is necessary for developing policy but not sufficient, the challenges associated with prevention, the relevance of the food and agriculture sectors to improve nutrition, the need to rethink the role of foods and nutrients in health, and the importance of multidisciplinary approaches to solve nutrition problems. Principles for moving forward are based on the significance of nutrition for public health, the importance of investing in nutrition research that can be used as a basis for development of policy, the need for diagnostic tools that help motivate behavior to maintain health and prevent disease, the use of nutrition knowledge to improve the food supply, and recognition that behavior will determine the success of nutrition strategies.
Barbara Schneeman, PhD, is an emeritus faculty member and former dean of the College of Agricultural and Environmental Sciences, University of California, Davis. She is the former director of the Nutrition, Labeling, and Dietary Supplements Office at the Food and Drug Administration, and she has also served on the Dietary Guidelines Advisory Committee.
This article is based on the keynote presentation given at the Better Foods for Better Health Symposium sponsored by the Fondation Mérieux in France. The 2013 symposium was the fourth conference in this series and focuses on the importance of food and nutrition in maintaining health and reducing risk of disease.
The author has no conflicts of interest to disclose.
Correspondence: Barbara Schneeman, PhD, 12618 Shoal Creek Ter, Beltsville, MD 20705 (email@example.com).