ILSI Federation Dietary Trends Newsletter

June 2022

This newsletter intends to provide an overview of upcoming, current and recent ILSI Federation activities in the area of Dietary Trends. It also provides a non-comprehensive overview of relevant activities from other key organizations.

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ILSI Federation Activities

ILSI believes researchers from the public and private sectors, as well as academia, can and should work together on science and health issues of common interest or concern. Public-private collaboration - where all interests, conflicts and biases are declared, and all funding is acknowledged - can improve the science used to promote the health and safety of the public and the environment. Together with its hundreds academic institutions from around the world, public sector agencies, more than 300 member companies and civil society organizations, the ILSI Federation develops project proposals that address important public health issues with the highest standards of Scientific Integrity.

Upcoming and Ongoing ILSI Activities

Food Composition and the Periodic Table of Food Initiative  

The links between diet and health are key and ILSI has long addressed food composition and nutrient intakes. The Periodic Table of Food Initiative (PTFI), a new effort supported by the Rockefeller Foundation, intends to improve food composition analysis using advanced analytical chemistry and bioinformatics (metabolomics and other omics sciences). Following on its participation to the PTFI launch and to a strategy workshop with participants from around the world, including the National Agriculture and Food Research Organization (NARO, Japan), FAO, universities in Latin America, and the USDA, ILSI Southeast Asia Region will work with PTFI regionally and assist globally, with partners from the Mahidol University in Thailand, the University of the South Pacific in Fiji, and others. For more information contact Mrs. Boon Yee Yeong at boonyee@ilsisea.org.sg.

 

Consensus on Vegetarianism in the First Five Years of Life: Repercussions on the Health, Management, and Recommendations

The risk for nutritional deficiencies in children consuming vegetarian diets has been investigated and is an incentive for the establishment of nutritional guides, positions, and guidelines. If the vegetarian diet is not adequately balanced by diversity, combining cereals with legumes, milk, and eggs, it can lead to nutritional deficiencies for certain vitamins and minerals. This can occur mainly in infants and children between 2 to 5 years of age. ILSI Brazil will launch a new publication with the key objective to propose food recommendations for vegetarian/vegan in the first five years of life. Interested? Contact ilsibr@ilsi.org.br.

Nutritional Science and Health Ongoing Seminar Series 

ILSI Southeast Asia Region will organize a seminar on "Dietary Proteins: Consumption Trends, Innovations for Health and Sustainability" in August 2022, examining protein intake requirements, current consumption trends, as well as the rapid innovations in the development of alternative protein sources to promote better health and environmental sustainability. Contact ilsisea@ilsisea.org.sg to know more and register for this event.

 

Nutrients and Health 

The goal of this ILSI Mesoamerica project is to present the scientific evidence that supports the beneficial impact of nutrients on health. Webinars, round tables, infographics, and other communication materials will be developed to share scientific information to all the populations. Join our first webinar in July 2022. For more information, please contact executivedirector@ilsimesoamerica.org.

 

Allergenicity Assessment of Novel Proteins  

The aim of this activity at ILSI Europe is to facilitate the introduction of novel protein sources by promoting the tools for a clearer regulatory environment, supported by better alignment between scientific test methodologies and risk management objectives. The toolbox designed for all involved in the risk assessment process for novel foods and ingredients, will provide guidance on how to effectively communicate with non-technical stakeholders. The publication submission in a peer-reviewed journal is expected in Q3 2022.
Interested? Contact tkoenig@ilsieurope.be.

 

Risk Assessment of Cell-based Cultivated Food Products  

ILSI U.S. and Canada is proposing to its partners a new project with a scientific approach to monitor the integrity and safety of cultivated meat, as well as hybrid and adulterated foods. The goal is to explore a presently unknown territory and prepare and develop a benchmark for what the risks are in each step of the process for the benefit of the consumer’s safety, the regulatory landscape, and the industrial production of these novel foods. Interested? Contact research@ilsiuscanada.org.

Nutrition, Lifestyle and Brain Health: A Lifestyle Approach

In view of increasing incidence of brain related disorders including increasing incidence of Dementia, Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s diseases in an aging population ILSI India Task Force on Nutrition and Brain Health sponsored a Study on "Nutrition, Lifestyle and Brain Health: A Lifecycle Approach". This study reviews information on studies undertaken in last 10 years on critical period of brain development, importance of early life influences on cognitive development, factors affecting brain health through the life course, role of nutrition in brain development and functions, risk factors as also risk reduction for Cognitive decline, Dementia, Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s diseases. The Study also recommends strategies to promote brain health throughout the lifespan i.e., pregnancy, infancy and childhood, adult and midlife and old age. Recommendations have been made on areas for further research in India. For further information, contact info@ilsi-india.org.

 

A Systematic Review of Plant-Based Ingredients and their Effects on Cognitive Performance  

There is increasing interest in plant-based ingredients that may improve cognitive performance and prevent or reverse cognitive function decline during adulthood. This ILSI Europe ongoing activity aims to:

  • Summarize and evaluate the current literature relating to plant-based ingredients, their constituents and cognitive performance.
  • Produce a collective review of these ingredients in a systematic way.
  • Critically evaluate the findings to provide guidance on the most effective ingredients and combinations thereof.

Interested? Contact mflourakis@ilsieurope.be.

Review of the Planetary Health Diet and its Impact on Brain Health Throughout Life 

In 2019 a Commission for the medical journal Lancet published recommendations for a diet sustaining health and protecting the planet (Willett W. et al. 2019). The aim of this diet is to be able to feed the estimated 10 billion people in 2050 with minimal environmental impact. However, little is known about the effects of such a diet on brain functions, especially on the brain development at early stages of life and in the context of the still increasing rate of cognitive decline in the ageing population. An ILSI Europe narrative review is in its final stages before publication in the journal Lancet Planetary Health. The review objectives are:

  • Evaluate the planetary health diet’s impact on brain health and functions throughout life, specifically among more vulnerable populations.
  • Highlight the implications of the planetary health diet for proper lifelong brain health.

Interested? Contact mflourakis@ilsieurope.be.

 

4th Symposium on 'Nutrition for the Ageing Brain' 

This multi-stakeholder event organized by ILSI Europe to be held in Lisbon, Portugal, on 25 and 26 August 2022 will focus on the following themes:

  • Sustainable Food Systems.
  • Latest evidence in molecular mechanisms and epidemiological aspects.
  • The Gut-Brain Axis: Evidence of targeting the gut for maintaining brain health

Register here or contact mflourakis@ilsieurope.be for more information.

Eating behaviors 

This webinar series developed by ILSI Mesoamerica aims to take a multi-disciplinary scientific approach to present the various elements that make up the eating behaviors of human beings. In a first webinar (in Spanish), the anthropological bases of our eating behaviors, as well as the principles of nutrition that allow the construction of an eating behavior as the basis of the well-being of individuals and society were discussed. In the following seminars, experts in neuroscience, psychology, sociology, nutrition, among others, will be presenting other aspects relevant to eating behaviors. If you are interested in knowing more, please contact executivedirector@ilsimesoamerica.org.

 

Sodium Reduction Alliance 

More than 40 percent of total sodium intake comes from processed foods, as the reports of 2014-2017 NAHSIT (Nutrition and Health Survey in Taiwan, NAHSIT) have shown. Currently, the recommendation or standards for sodium content in processed, packaged, and prepared foods in Taiwan is still pending. On Apr 26, ILSI Taiwan held an Expert Meeting to tackle this issue and call for the action to form a sodium reduction alliance. This voluntary sodium reduction alliance aims to encourage food manufacturers to reformulate formulas or develop new products, push the agenda of sodium reduction in the country with the collaboration of research institutions, food manufacturers (both members and non-members) and some other associations and NGOs. Population-level sodium intake reduction should progress at a pace such as consumer preferences and behavior changes for salt additions in foods. Successful sodium reduction is contingent upon broad participation and distribution of impacts across the food industry. Ultimately, this sodium reduction alliance, in collaboration with health partners, aims to highlights the implications of sodium reduction in NCDs and hypertensions. Interested? Contact ilsi.tw@ilsitaiwan.org.

 

Patterns of Sodium Intake and Sources of Sodium Among Filipinos Aged 19 to 50 Years: Findings from the 2008 National Nutrition Survey

Hypertension is a leading risk factor for cardiovascular disease and premature deaths globally and is especially common in Asian populations. Excess sodium intake is a risk factor for high blood pressure. However, there is a lack of comprehensive sodium intake data in Southeast Asia. The objectives of this ILSI Southeast Asia Region conducted in the Philippines research are to:

  • Estimate sodium intake among different population groups and per capital intake using data from the 2008 National Nutrition Survey.
  • Identify major food categories that contribute significantly to sodium intakes in each group.

Interested? Contact ilsisea@ilsisea.org.sg.

 

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Recent ILSI Events and Publications

Plant-Based and Alternative Proteins Trend

Plant protein sources

ILSI Taiwan invited the Food Industry Development Research Institute, Taiwan's upstream raw material manufacturers, downstream product manufacturers and sales channels to share the key technologies of Taiwan's plant meat, trend reports, and real-world examples of market sales. Learn more (in Chinese)

 

Sharing Technical and Regulatory Status on Food Safety Aspects of Novel Animal Protein Substitutes

ILSI Korea offered with this event a better understanding of the variety of meat substitutes and their scientific technology and regulatory issues related to food safety. Talks were tailored on the current status and future perspectives on cultured meat as well as on the primary analysis of safety assessments on alternative proteins for implementing regulations. Learn more (In Korean)

A Practical Path to Healthy Eating Promotion: Towards Healthy Processed Foods

ILSI Taiwan's conference highlighted that "Plant-Based Diets for health and sustainable planet" is one of key focus for Taiwan's Health Promotion Administration (HPA) in 2022. HPA will develop nutrition policies and local approaches and will disseminate related messages to the public. Learn more (in Chinese)

Impact of the Ukraine-Russia Conflict on Food Supply Chains

ILSI Europe held a roundtable discussion with seven industry, academic and civil society experts to discuss the immediate concerns and potential solutions to the global impact of the Ukraine-Russia conflict on food supply chains. Affordability, food safety due to substation of affected food ingredients, food fraud and nutrition security were among the themes addressed. The need for long-term, broad plans and frameworks to improve the resilience of the food systems was discussed. A short communication summarizing the webinar will be available soon. Please contact Isabelle, at iguelinckx@ilsieurope.be for more information.

 

Functional Foods for Wellbeing

Comprehensive well-being is a state that depends on the context and the situation, which includes basic aspects for a good life: freedom and choice, health and bodily well-being, good social relationships, security, and peace of mind. Comprehensive well-being is a concept related to the good condition of individuals or groups. This ILSI Mesoamerica webinar (in Spanish) highlighted that there are many regional foods with physiological activity that may have the potential to promote well-being and health.

 

Plant Proteins in Clinical and Sports Nutrition

This discussion panel moderated by ILSI Brazil offered some insights on whether the source of protein plays a modulating role in training responses, highlighting that the composition of all essential amino acids and good digestibility are two measures of a protein’s quality. Read more (in Portuguese)

Systematic Review and Meta-Analysis of Protein Intake to Support Muscle Mass and Function in Healthy Adults

ILSI Europe's publication concludes that increasing daily protein ingestion may enhance gains in Lean Body Mass (LBM) in studies enrolling subjects in Resistance Exercise (RE). The effect on LBM was significant in subjects ≥65 years old ingesting 1.2–1.59 g of protein/kg/day and for younger subjects (<65 years old) ingesting ≥1.6 g of protein/kg/day submitted to RE. Access the full publication.

Sustainable Nutrition: from Theory to Practice

Several global models suggest that changing diets, reducing food waste and transitioning to regenerative agricultural practices make it possible to feed 10 billion people within healthy environmental parameters while restoring health and everyone's well-being. Four possible research areas were discussed during an ILSI Brazil’s event, including positive nutrition (healthier processed foods), higher demand for sustainable proteins (and in particular plant-derived ones), optimization of the production and consumption of plant-based foods, and changes in consumer behavior, in favor of healthy and sustainable choices. Read more

 

Value Addition to Agriculture through Food Processing: Science, Technology, Benefit

This ILSI India event highlighted that conventional animal agriculture poses substantial threats to human health, the environment, and animal welfare. It is a leading cause of environmental destruction – including deforestation, ocean dead zones, and water and air pollution – and contributes more greenhouse gas emissions than the entire global transportation sector. Two of the most promising solutions to meet growing global protein demand are plant-based meat and cell-based meat: using plant-based ingredients and animal cells as more sustainable inputs and units of production. Read more

Nutrients for Optimal Health: Evidence-based Science and Innovation for Public Health and Consumer Guidance

This ILSI Southeast Asia Region event organized in collaboration with A*STAR, Singapore, was attended by over 150 participants including nutritional and public health professionals, researchers, and representatives from government agencies, academia and industry. The topics included the evolving landscape of nutrition science, from nutrients research to dietary guidelines for public health and consumer guidance, as well as the emerging trends in diets relevant to Asian populations in the context of metabolic health. The outcomes range from the identification of research gaps as well as the recommendation for more resources to raise the quality of food composition data. Learn more

 

Current Trends in Food and Nutrients Consumption in India

This event moderated by ILSI India presented a review of the consumption of sugar, fat, salt in urban/rural areas in India as well as the comprehensive national nutrition survey (from UNICEF) and considered midlife factors that influence the aging process and the impact of vitamin D on health. Find out more

Whole Grains for Promoting Health: Production, Consumption, Utilization & Health Benefits

There have been significant changes in people’s food basket in India, partly because of economic improvement. While the bulk consumption remains grain-based, the kind of grains primarily being consumed and the form in which they are being consumed have changed with consumers’ preferences of taste and convenience. Two main changes have taken shape: processed grains are favored over whole grains; and rice and wheat constitute a large proportion of the total grains consumed, with coarse grains, such as jowar, barley and ragi have declined. ILSI India, together with the Ministry of Food Processing Industries of India, organized this event to examine the nutrient profile and health benefits of select whole grains, identify the barriers to whole grains consumption, and review the trends in whole grain production and future prospects. Read more

 

From Around the World

International Organizations

World Bank

Q&A with Juergen Voegele - How is the War in Ukraine Affecting Food Security?

FAO

The FAO Strategic Framework 2022-31 articulates FAO's vision of a sustainable and food secure world for all, in the context of the Agenda 2030 for Sustainable Development.

OECD

Potential impact of dietary changes on the triple challenge facing food systems. Learn more

Periodic Table of Food Initiative

The Periodic Table of Food Initiative, an initiative supported by the Rockefeller Foundation in partnership with the the American Heart Association (AHA) and the Alliance between Bioversity International and the International Center for Tropical Agriculture (CIAT), was officially launched in May 2022. It took place during a side event of the World Health Assembly in Geneva, and it included Dr. Francesca Branca, head of nutrition and food safety at WHO as a panelist. It aims to create a reference database of the composition and the function of the food. Learn more

Regional Organizations

North America

USDA Announces Actions on Nutrition Security: Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack announced on March 17, 2022 a report detailing the U.S. Department of Agriculture's (USDA) Actions on Nutrition Security. Learn more

 

 

Health Canada is proposing amendments to the Food and Drug Regulations to support Canadians' ability to make healthier food choices. Forward Regulatory Plan 2022-2024

Asia

The Ministry of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries of Japan began to consider the regulations necessary for alternative meat products in 2020, as reported here by USDA-GAIN. The outcome of these is highly anticipated to facilitate the use of novel protein sources in the Japanese diet.


ADB
(Asian Development Bank) published the "Asian Development Outlook (ADO) 2020 update: Wellness in Worrying Times", and a background paper on "Eating in Developing Asia: Trends, Consequences and Policies" (link available here), which presents an overview of the trends in diets and dietary patterns, the food environments and drivers of dietary change, as well as the consequences of malnutrition.

Europe

European Union citizens' understanding of sustainability and willingness to change their eating habits were surveyed in 2020 by the European Commission, as part of the EU's "farm to fork" strategy to develop a fair, healthy, eco-friendly food system in the EU. A key finding was that Europeans prioritize taste, food safety and cost over sustainability concerns when buying food. Find a summary here.


EFSA
(European Food Safety Authority) proposed a Novel Food guidance to consider whether the novel food is safe under the proposed conditions of use and whether the normal consumption of the novel food would be nutritionally disadvantageous. Novel food categories include new or modified molecular structure, cell or tissue cultures derived from animals, plants, fungi or algae, and new production process among others. Find the presentation here.

Registration to virtually attend the ONE – Health, Environment, Society – Conference 2022 co-organized by EFSA and the European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control (ECDC), the European Chemicals Agency (ECHA), the European Environment Agency (EEA), the European Commission's Joint Research Centre (JRC) and the European Medicines Agency (EMA) on 21-24 June is still possible.

 

Latin America

USDA and GAIN released a report on Brazil's Plant-based Food Trends as the country experiences an important increase of people becoming vegetarian driving the demand for animal-free products. Read more


PAHO
(Pan American Health Organization) has proposed a 30% relative reduction in the average daily salt and sodium intake in the Americas by 2025. Their Salt/Sodium Intake Reduction Policies portal can be found here.

Colombia's Ministry of Health and Social Protection issued Resolution 2013, a regulation for mandatory maximum sodium content in 59 processed food products, with an initial threshold of product sodium content set to go into effect in November 2022. Read more

The Latin American Food Congress: A Comprehensive Look at Food Systems - CLAMISA 2022 will be held in Medellín, Colombia (November 15-18, 2022).

The 5th International Congress of Functional Foods and Nutraceuticals, CIAFN, in Mexico (July 8 – 10, 2022) will discuss the "Search for the new generation of healthy foods".