Who Will Stand Up for Rigorous Science Over Industry Interests and—Really?—Religion?
USDA-HHS finally announced the members of the advisory committee for the 2020 Dietary Guidelines, a powerful group of experts who will determine what constitutes a healthy diet. Their work has implications not only for nutrition and health in the United States but is likely to influence food policy globally.
In its educational efforts, The Nutrition Coalition (TNC) emphasized the need for the committee to include top experts in “evidence-based” medicine. These are scientists who know how to properly prioritize scientific evidence and could help bring a much-needed scientific foundation to the Dietary Guidelines. (A “lack of scientific rigor” in the Guidelines was noted by the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine, or NASEM, in a 2017 Congressionally mandated report to review the guidelines process). Such experts could also create some distance between the committee and the established interests who inevitably shape the Guidelines—from Big Food and Big Pharma, to scientists entangled in various conflicts of interest.