Nutrition News

Research Roundup

Noteworthy nutrition studies highlighted by members of The Chan School’s Department of Nutrition

Glyphosate, the primary active ingredient in the herbicide grass“Roundup,” is a broad-spectrum, non-selective, systemic herbicide, which effectively kills all plant types. Glyphosate-based herbicide was introduced to the US in 1974 and now has become the world’s most common herbicide.

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2015 Dietary Guidelines will not include a focus on sustainability

The 2015 Dietary Guidelines will not include a focus on sustainability, according to a statement posted Tuesday on the USDA blog. Secretary of Agriculture Tom Vilsack and Secretary of Health and Human Services Sylvia Burwell wrote that sustainability – defined as evaluating the environmental impact of a food source – is beyond the scope of the dietary guidelines, citing a mandate in the 1990 National Nutrition Monitoring and Related Research Act (NNMRRA). The final 2015 Guidelines are currently being drafted, but as Secretaries Vilsack and Burwell wrote, “Because this is a matter of scope, we do not believe that the 2015 DGAs are the appropriate vehicle for this important policy conversation about sustainability.” Continue reading

How is heart disease risk affected when saturated fat is replaced by other nutrients?

In the recent Harvard Gazette article “Butter’s benefits melt away,” researchers at Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health debunk the controversy surrounding saturated fat and heart health. In a new study appearing online in the Journal of the American College of Cardiology, senior author Frank Hu and colleagues found that people who replace saturated fat (primarily found in meats and dairy foods) with refined carbohydrates do not lower their risk of heart disease, whereas those who replace saturated fats with unsaturated fats or whole grains lower their heart disease risk.
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