National Association of Chronic Disease Directors Releases White Paper on Diet and Nutrition's Role in Chronic Disease Prevention

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The National Association of Chronic Disease Directors (NACDD) has published a white paper on the role of diet and nutrition in the prevention of chronic disease. The white paper was produced in response to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC)'s first National Report on Selected Biochemical Indicators of Diet and Nutrition in the U.S. Population, 1999-2002 (Nutrition Report).

The National Association of Chronic Disease Directors (NACDD) has published a white paper on the role of diet and nutrition in the prevention of chronic disease.

The white paper was produced in response to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC)'s first National Report on Selected Biochemical Indicators of Diet and Nutrition in the U.S. Population, 1999-2002 (Nutrition Report).

"It is essential to continue and expand the current efforts being made by CDC's Environmental Health Laboratory, which monitors human levels of vitamins, trans fats and omega-3 fatty acids, and other indicators of nutritional and dietary status, to provide the scientific data needed to make critical decisions about nutritional health for the nation," said David Hoffman, NACDD Policy Committee chair. "The information gleaned from these reports will provide key data to policymakers and healthcare providers to help make America a healthier nation."

"NACDD is proud to present and disseminate the CDC report and important white paper that interprets the findings," said John Robitscher, NACDD executive director. "We plan to continue and expand this collaborative effort to advance understanding of the association between levels of selected biochemical indicators of diet and nutrition and chronic disease in the U.S. population," said John Robitscher, NACDD executive director.

The white paper was developed by registered dieticians, public health scientists and consultants from twelve states. Its primary purpose is to translate and condense observations made from an analysis of 1999-2002 National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey (NHANES) data, so that these observations might more readily stimulate discussion about the importance of diet and nutrition in the prevention of chronic disease.

It also makes broad recommendations for public health program and policy actions that would help address the population problems and infrastructure needs suggested by the Nutrition Report. It also is intended to advance public health nutrition science and encourage the integration of dietary and nutrition actions in state chronic disease program plans.

The white paper includes: general information describing the importance of each dietary and nutrition indicator discussed in the Nutrition Report; observations grouped by age, sex, and race/ethnicity; and recommendations for public health action.

White Paper Recommendations:

  •     Expand the capacity of the Division of Laboratory Sciences at CDC's National Center for Environmental Health to process, analyze, and disseminate findings from NHANES and other surveillance systems with diet and nutrition data.
  •     Support development and funding of comprehensive public health nutrition grant programs.
  •     Expand nutrition research funding for government and academic research centers.
  •     Support review of and possible revisions to nutrient intake recommendations.
  •     Support broad (federal and state) diet and nutrition population surveillance and monitoring efforts.
  •     Explore options for food labeling education and information in multiple languages.
  •     Adopt incentives that encourage production and consumption of healthy foods.
  •     Work with food industry partners to increase healthy food options.
  •     Conduct public hearings at state and national levels to elicit feedback on diet and nutrition issues.
  •     Assemble and enhance capacity of state-level nutrition policy committees.
  •     Increase access to healthy foods in disadvantaged communities.
  •     Build constituencies in states and communities to advocate for and support development and implementation of evidenced-based nutrition programs and policies.

The Nutrition Report and white paper represent a major step towards integration of work by several CDC entities, including the Division of Laboratory Sciences (DLS) of the National Center for Environmental Health (NCEH), the National Center for Chronic Disease Prevention and Health Promotion (NCCDPHP), the National Center on Birth Defects and Developmental Disabilities (NCBDDD), and the Division of Health Examination Statistics at the National Center for Health Statistics (NCHS), state chronic disease prevention programs and NACDD.

About NACDD
The National Association of Chronic Disease Directors is a national public health association, founded in 1988, to link the chronic disease program directors of each state and U.S. territory to provide a national forum for chronic disease prevention and control efforts. NACDD provides state-based leadership and expertise for chronic disease prevention and control at the state and national level. Further information about NACDD is available at http://www.chronicdisease.org.

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WENDY ALPINE
NACDD
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