New vit D levels for Europe, EU health claims block regulation, Personalised nutrition on the rise, UK childhood obesity hits high, More CDC scientists lodge ethics complaint, Future supplements dependent on technology
The Cancer Conflict - kickstarter campaign launched
Trail-blazing documentary film maker, Tom Meadmore, has launched a kickstarter campaign to raise money to complete his unique project entitled, ‘The Cancer Conflict’. ANH-Intl is working with Tom on this valuable project, which is addressing important issues in the whole cancer debate that just aren't seeing the light of day elsewhere. We see enormous value in presenting both sides of the debate from both a conventional and an integrated/complementary perspective – from the patient’s perspectives. Not only do we hope it will help the mainstream and complementary medicine work more harmoniously together, but that it will ensure that the patient is in possession of more information to make truly informed choices about their own course of treatment. Tom now needs upwards of £40,000 GB to cover the costs of editing, music, graphics and final post production ready for broadcast and distribution. We would love it if you could help share this with your networks and spread the word with us.
New EU dietary reference values set for Vitamin D by EFSA
As part of the review of reference values for nutrients and energy set in 1993, EFSA has set new dietary reference values (DRVs) for the intake of supplementary vitamin D. EFSA provides this advice to risk managers in EU countries who use it for making recommendations to consumers and industry. The Panel on Dietetic Products, Nutrition and Allergies (NDA) defined an adequate intake (AI) of 15 µg (equivalent to 600 IU) per day for healthy individuals over one year of age which is 3 times more than the Nutrient Reference Value (NRV), previously the Recommended Daily Allowance (RDA). This includes pregnant and lactating women. The DRV for infants aged 7-11 months has been set at 10 µg (400 IU) per day. Vitamin D plays an important role in the body, in particular by helping to maintain normal bones, muscle function, as well as the immune and endocrine systems. Vitamin D can be synthesised in the body following exposure to the sun to create circulating levels of 25-hydroxyvitamin D of 90-100 nmol/L (36–40 ng/mL) or greater, that are equivalent to oral consumption of 250 – 625 µg (10,000 – 25,000 IU) per day. This can be achieved by most persons by exposing around 80% of the body, without sunblock, for at least 15 mins, three times a week, although exposure times vary considerably according to skin type. The DRVs for vitamin D are based on the assumption of minimal exposure to the sun with resulting limited levels of synthesis of vitamin D from sunlight exposure, but they still fall way short of the 2000-4000 IU (50-100 µg)/day recommended by most nutritional practitioners and vitamin D experts .
EU Health claims regulation blocking innovation
A German study has concluded they are experiencing severe problems in food innovation. The study from the University of Bonn found several impacts of the EU Nutrition and Health Claims Regulation (NHCR) including consumer confusion over claim wording, limited research and development and a reduction in product innovation in Germany. The researchers wrote that, “On the whole it appears that the NHCR (article 13.1) currently provides less incentive for product differentiation and investment in innovation activities”. ANH-Intl’s executive and scientific director, Rob Verkerk PhD, said the research added weight to calls from industry and some political groups to amend or dismantle the defective NHCR. He added that, “This publication and the two other related papers, provide a significant chink in the armour of this defective regulation”.
Personalised nutrition is on the rise
Recent reports are pointing to a rise in big business trying to tap into the personalised nutrition market. P-Fit aims to offer protein blends based on individual requirements such as gender, age, weight, height and training frequency, whilst Habit (who are backed by Campbells Soup) is looking to offer a personalised meal delivery service based on an at home test kit that will measure more than 60 different biomarkers, including nutrition related blood markers and DNA SNPs, along with body metrics and health goals. This information will provide a personal nutrition blueprint and form the basis of the type of food that is delivered. As always though, it will be interesting to see if these services are truly personal or if customers will still need to fit into pre-defined boxes.
Childhood obesity levels hit record high in UK
In a recent UK NHS publication statistics revealed that childhood obesity levels in England have reached the highest yet on record. One fifth of children aged 10-11 were overweight or obese. In year 6 it was over a third. Obesity rates in reception age children have increased 0.2% (from 9.1-9.3%). The rate of obesity in children in deprived areas (28%) is more than double that of those children in the least deprived area (11%). Obesity rates for boys are higher than for girls. The Government released its Childhood Obesity Plan in August 2016, but has been roundly criticised for lacking in substance and having been ‘watered down’. If nothing, other than paying lip service to Big Food, is done to tackle the growing rates of obesity in children, not only will this impact on their health and wellbeing, but significantly increase the knock-on effects for the next generation. ANH-Intl have repeatedly called for a redirection in focus to preventative/lifestyle based disease management strategies. One such strategy is ANH-Intl’s Food4Health guideline ‘plates’ that have been designed with the human genome in mind, backed by cutting-edge nutritional science and underpinned by biochemistry in order to avert the forthcoming avalanche of chronic disease that threatens to cripple healthcare systems globally, not just in the UK.
Senior scientists have lodged an ethics complaint against the Centers for Disease Control
The US Centers for Disease Control (CDC), which is already under investigation for allegedly manipulating data regarding a link between the MMR vaccine and autism, is now the recipient of a complaint by its own senior scientists. In a letter, signed by CDC SPIDER (Scientists Preserving Integrity, Diligence and Ethics in Research) the group claims that unethical practices threaten to undermine the integrity and credibility of the agency. The Scientists have expressed concern at the close relationship between two highly placed CDC officials with Coca-Cola Co and the International Life Sciences Institute (ILSI), a non-profit interest group supported by Coca-Cola; the burying of screening data for the Wise Woman program and a senior CDC official’s assignment to Emory University, whilst still employed at the CDC. Their main concern is that these issues call into question the ethics and work of scientists at the agency and that they are being put under undue pressure to, “Do things we know are not right”. The CDC has so far refused to publicly respond to the complaint.
Jeff Bland: 'Technology is the future for nutritional supplements'
Dr Jeffrey Bland, known to many as the ‘father of functional medicine’ has observed that technological advances from genomic testing to real-time data collection from wearables will open up new opportunities for dietary supplements. He was speaking at the Personalized Lifestyle Medicine Institute’s annual conference in Phoenix, Arizona in October and said that he sees the future of nutritional supplements becoming science based around scientific wellness. This technology allows us to move away from a disease-centred pharmaceutical model to that of a health-centric position where food is the medicine modulating human physiology. He closed his presentation with these powerful words — “Observation leads to discovery, discovery leads to innovation, innovation leads to improvement”.