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Current Issues in Nutrition - Past Programs

May 2012 Program - Integrating Regional Food System Work in Nutrition Education and Outreach- $35
The growing interest by the public in regional food systems is expanding rapidly. The regional food system is complex and influenced by numerous factors including social issues, food safety, and access. These many facets of regional food systems can often cause confusion not only from consumers but also from the nutrition professionals who are working with them. The Spring 2012 Current Issues in Nutrition program discusses why and how nutrition professionals can get involved with regional food system work in order to better serve their clientele.


  • Be able to describe reasons for engaging in regional food system work within a dietetics framework.
  • Understand the primary components of a regional food system and how they relate to the current global food system.
  • Understand the range of activities currently underway nationally and identify ways to interact.
  • Understand Federal efforts with regard to regional food systems through the USDA Know Your Farmer, Know Your Food initiative.
  • Understand the relationships between community and regional food systems
  • Understand how community food systems contribute to regional food system infrastructure
  • Know how the values of sustainable agriculture align with intercultural competence and social justice
  • Identify the practice elements of culturally competent, socially equitable food sytems
  • Contemplate models in practice that are economically viable, environmentally sound, socially just and increase access to healthy food
  • Learn about a method for evaluating progress to food systems justice: Whole Measure for Community Food Systems
October 2011 Program - The 2010 Dietary Guidelines: Science Behind the Recommendations and Applications for Nutrition Education- $35
Two major events have occurred in the field on nutrition during 2011: the release of the 2010 Dietary Guideline and MyPlate. Each has a major impact on how nutrition practitioners educate clientele. Representatives from the Center for Nutrition Policy and Promotion (USDA), Joanne Spahn, Director, Evidence Analysis Library Division and Dr. Robert C. Post, Deputy Director, will be the featured speakers of the fall 2011 Current Issues in Nutrition program. They will address the evidence-based review process that was utilized in the writing of the 2010 Dietary Guidelines and how these guidelines have been incorporated into MyPlate. Other strategies that will help you better educate your clientele will also be addressed.

April 2011 Program - Shake the Salt: New Recommendations and Implications- $35
The newly released sodium recommendations from the Institute of Medicine and the 2010 Dietary Guidelines have initiated much discussion among the general public, health care professionals and food industry. Primarily, how can the public achieve a daily sodium intake of 1500 milligrams? What prompted this much lower recommendation? And how is industry responding? Dr. Lawrence Appel, Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health and member of the 2010 Dietary Guidelines committee, and Dr. Richard Black, Vice President, Nutrition at Kraft Foods Global will address the rationale behind the new lower sodium recommendations and the implications to the public and food industry respectively.
Program Goals:
  • explain the variety of roles and functions sodium plays in the processed food supply
  • explain the challenges to be overcome in reducing sodium in the processed food supply
  • discuss the balance of government and industry roles in determining sodium targets and the means to achieve them
  • discuss the scientific rationale for population-wide sodium reduction
  • discuss current recommendations for dietary sodium intake
  • discuss strategic approaches to accomplish population-wide sodium reduction
November 2010 Program - Where Does Your Food Come From and Does it Matter?- $35
Current media and governmental attention to food systems (e.g. local food systems, sustainable foods systems, and traditional food systems) have initiated multiple discussions among policy makers, environmentalists and healthcare providers. Perceived benefits and risks relative to health, economics, environment, and how these systems may complement each other are central to these discussions. This conference will focus on the social and economic perspectives of these complementary food systems.

Program Goals:
  • Define and explain the components of the food system and the terms community food security and community supported agriculture
  • Explore the implications of the food system for sustainability and our food choices for both health and sustainability
  • Dichotomy between global and local food demand and systems to address the demand
  • Role of technology in the cost of food systems
  • Different measures of sustainability

April 2010 Program - The Good Gut Bugs: Prebiotics and Probiotics - $35
Probiotic and prebiotic food product availability and usage are growing trends in nutrition. Probiotics and prebiotics are marketed as good dietary additions promoting digestive health as well as other health benefits. This conference will focus on the current science of probiotics and prebiotics and how health care practitioners can put this information into practice.

Program Goals:
  • Define and identify the physiologic roles or prebiotics and probiotics
  • Explore health implications and potential benefits of prebiotics and probiotics
  • Examine the prebiotic and probiotic products available
  • Discuss consumer and health care provider guidelines

November 2009 Program - Appetite, Satiety, and Body Weight Regulation - $35
The obesity epidemic has a multifaceted etiology. Physiologic and environmental factors influencing appetite and satiety are etiologic factors, which have received significant attention recently. This program will provide an update of the current research including: the physiology of appetite and satiety; effect of macronutrient composition on satiety; hormones relative to appetite and satiety; and environmental and dietary factors influence on appetite and satiety. Participants will then have the opportunity to explore specific weight control strategies relative to the physiological and environmental factors presented.

Program Goals:
  • Review the physiology of body weight regulation
  • Understand physiological factors influencing appetite and satiety
  • Examine dietary and environmental factors influencing appetite and satiety
  • Explore body weight control strategies

April 2009 Program - Vitamin D: Sunshine or Supplement? - $35
Vitamin D, typically known for its role in calcium absorption and bone mineralization, has emerged as a nutrient with far-reaching implications. Vitamin D also has a role in neuromuscular function, immune function, reduction of inflammation, as well as cell proliferation and differentiation. As such, recent research suggests that Vitamin D has a role in various types of cancer, heart disease, diabetes, hypertension, and multiple sclerosis. Some researchers suggest optimal Vitamin D status can only be achieved with dietary intakes 2-5 times the current Dietary Reference Intake (DRI). Vitamin D could become a 'functional nutrient' consumers will see as a fortification nutrient in food products. This conference will focus on the current science of Vitamin D and how practitioners can implement this new science with consumers.

Program Goals:
  • Review the scientific evidence suggesting a role for Vitamin D in chronic diseases
  • Explore the meaning of 'optimal' Vitamin D status
  • Describe the current and forthcoming recommendations (DRIs) for Vitamin D intake
  • Provide guidance for practitioners to effectively counsel clients/patients on optimal Vitamin D intake and status
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