What's in your Nutrition Toolbox?
Are you fed up with nutrition flim-flam?
Check out our ongoing list of reliable resources:
Check out the IRN YouTube Channel here.
Documentaries & Films
Dr. Mercola's Interview with Dr. Lustig
Dr. Lustig explains how sugar is like poison in this interview by Dr. Mercola.
The Green Bronx Machine TedX Talk
Stephen Ritz and the Green Bronx Machine show, despite incredible challenges, food system change and child nutrition can happen, even with 6th grade students!
Dr. Lustig's Talk in Mexico City
Dr. Lustig explains the biggest problem of the 21st century.
Robert Lustig - Eat Forum
Concise explanation of how the processed food is an experiment that has failed
Cindy Gershen - Wellness City Challenge
Sugar Crash - Irish Documentary on Sugar Consumption
A campaign to increase the marketing of fruits and vegetables (FNV).
The Open Truth Campaign is an innovative and bold effort by San Francisco Bay Area youth, public health officials and concerned community members to increase awareness about the health impacts of sugary drinks. Open Truth exposes the tactics of the sugary drinks industry, which targets young people, parents, and communities of color in order to increase profits and brand loyalty. Despite scientific evidence that links sugary drinks to chronic diseases, including type 2 diabetes, heart disease, stroke, cancer, and obesity, the beverage industry continues to target their products to our most vulnerable community members.
Learn more at Only Organic. A delightful parody: "The False Advertising Industry" reveals the shocking truth about what is allowed in "Natural" food with a healthy sense of humor. The USDA Organic Seal guarantees that food under this label contains no Genetically Modified Organisms, toxic pesticides, or growth hormones or antibiotics.
Processed food, animal confinement, and the use of synthetic growth hormones, non-therapeutic antibiotics, and toxic pesticides are rampant in the food supply. Here is Chipotle's innovative campaign to educate people about alternatives - a journey for the Scarecrow, and a journey for all of us.
A useful app that measures daily intake of total calories, macronutrients, sugar, vitamins and minerals from your phone, tablet or computer.
An app that "scans" food items to reveal the amount of sugar per serving.
Filter out foods you like.
Eliminate waste in the food system.
Tool for purchasing sustainable fish.
"For-purpose” enterprise, to address the growing interest in AgTech and NewFood among creative entrepreneurs.
Ecosystem and incubator for entrepreneurs across all segments of the food system.
A focus on food system investments
To increase funding to sustainable and local food and agriculture
Building Sustainable Food Systems: A role for investors
Promoting Sustainable Food Systems
A superb book on public health. Excerpt:
Core Beliefs and Values of Advocates for Healthy, Sustainable Consumption
1. Making a profit by sickening others is wrong.
2. Parents, families, teachers, and health professionals, not corporations, should educate people about health, nutrition, and moral values.
3. Nanny corporations that seek to exploit children’s vulnerability and immaturity, not nanny states, are the real threats to health and freedom.
4. The goal of social policy should be to make healthy choices easy choices.
5. In a globalized world, economic activity anywhere affects people everywhere; shifting the harms of such activity to another region or country in order to protect one group is wrong.
6. Every generation has a responsibility to leave the world a better place for future generations. Knowingly bequeathing our children and grandchildren a burden of disease, damaged environments, or corrupted democracy violates most of the world’s moral codes.
7. Science belongs to all humanity; appropriating it to profit at the expense of health or the environment is wrong.
The Dietary Guidelines for Americans
The Dietary Guidelines for Americans is a list of recommendations emphasized by the US government to optimize our country's health through nutrition and lifestyle.
The United States Department of Health and Human Services' Office of Disease Prevention and Health Promotion (ODPHP) and the USDA share the responsibility of administering the Dietary Guidelines. The 2015 Dietary Guidelines for Americans is administered by HHS.
Every 5 years, a committee is selected to review the current evidence and update/revise the Dietary Guidelines. The committee is diverse and represents a wide array of health specialties. The committee reviews data including evidence found in the USDA's Nutrition Evidence Library.
Here is the USDA's National Nutrient Database for reference. It lists many foods and their macro- and micronutrient value. However, added sugar is still missing.
The National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey (NHANES) is a series of studies that asses both the health and nutritional status of Americans, from youth to adulthood. It is conducted by the CDC's National Center for Health Statistics (NCHS) and uses both interviews and physical examinations. The data collected through NHANES is used in many different publications and studies.
Choice architecture is a framework that includes various strategies and approaches designed to help consumers make better, more informed decisions, based on reliable and actionable data.
1. The ANDI (Aggregate Nutrient Density index) food scoring system was created by Dr. Joel Fuhrman to illustrate which foods are the nutrient density of a variety of foods. It is a scale ranging from 1-1000. Soda is considered a "1", the least nutrient-dense, and kale is considered a "1000", the most nutrient-dense. The higher the score, the more "nutrients" per calorie. Currently, Whole Foods Market uses this system.
2. The Nordic Keyhole System is a Danish system for promoting healthier foods. Foods that qualify as "healthy" are marked with the keyhole symbol. Foods are ranked in comparison to other similar foods; the healthier option receives the keyhole symbol on its label.
3. My Fitness Pal is an app that allows users to search the nutritional content of over 5 million foods and track their daily intake. Users will better understand their caloric, macronutrient and micronutrient intake and are often encouraged to make healthier decisions.
4. British Traffic Light Labeling System is a proposed food labeling system in the EU. One of three different colors (like a traffic light) would represent the nutritional content of the food: "red", meaning high in fat, salt and/or sugar, "amber", meaning the food product contains moderate amounts of fat, salt and/or sugar, or "green", meaning it contains low amounts of fat, salt and/or sugar.
5. Real Food Certified is a food certification (much like LEED or Fair Trade) for food service organizations. It uses a point-based system to attest to whether the organization provides wholesome, healthy, sustainable foods.
6. EWG Food Scores is a food scoring system that acknowledges nutrition, ingredient and processing concerns. Foods are scored on a scale from 1 to 10, with 10 being the worst.
The IRN does not endorse any of the sites listed here. Nutrition facts can vary considerably from site to site.
- On the Nutrition Data site, you'll find detailed nutrition information, plus analysis tools that tell you more about how foods affect health and make it easier to choose healthy foods.
Nutrition.Gov "Whats in food" (many links on this page)
- USDA - Look up the amount of calories, fat, protein, vitamins, minerals and more contained in foods using the USDA's on-line searchable database. This is an up-to-date and comprehensive source for nutrients amounts in food.
- USDA - View nutrient values for 13,000 foods commonly eaten in the United States using familiar portion sizes that can be adjusted by the user.