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Highlights from the 20th International Congress of Nutrition (ICN), Granada 2013

The 20th edition of the International Congress of Nutrition took place in Granada, Spain, from 15th to the 20th September 2013. Organised by the International Union of Nutritional Sciences and the Spanish Society of Nutrition, this largest event of its kind brought together over 4,000 scientists from over 120 countries, for 6 days of lectures, symposia and debates dedicated to the latest scientific evidence on topics of food and nutrition. The European Food Information Council has interviewed a number of key scientists to create this podcast with conference highlights.

Given the implication of its message for a general audience, the symposium on ‘Energy balance and active living’ was extensively covered by EUFIC, and the interviews with 4 scientists were included in this podcast. They shared their views on tackling the obesity problem by focusing on both nutrition and physical activity. You can also watch the video of these interviews on energy balance (click here to watch).

Prof. David Allison presented Complexity of methodologies for studying energy balance.

David Allison is Associate Dean for Science, School of Public Health, and Director of the Nutrition Obesity Research Center at the University of Alabama in Birmingham, USA. He has authored over 450 scientific publications and edited five books. His research focuses broadly on the causes, consequences, treatment, and prevention of obesity. Taking an interdisciplinary approach, he works from basic science with animal models all the way through epidemiology, policy, and mathematical modelling.

Prof. James O. Hill presented Energy balance and Obesity, and chaired the session Energy balance and active living

James O. Hill, PhD, is Anschutz Professor and Founding Executive Director of the Anschutz Health and Wellness Center at the University of Colorado. He was President of The Obesity Society (TOS) 1997-8 and the American Society for Nutrition (ASN) 2008-9. Dr Hill has published more than 500 scientific articles and book chapters on the importance of healthy eating and physical activity in weight management. Dr Hill is a cofounder of the National Weight Control Registry and America on the Move. He is the author of the Step Diet Book, published in 2004 and the State of Slim published in 2013.

Prof. Steven N. Blair presented Physical activity: Impact on mortality and morbidity

Steven N. Blair is Professor in the Departments of Exercise Science and Epidemiology and Biostatistics at the Arnold School of Public Health, University of South Carolina. His research focuses on the associations between lifestyle and health, with a specific emphasis on exercise, physical fitness, body composition, and chronic disease. He has published over 550 papers and chapters in the scientific literature, and is one of the most highly cited exercise scientists with over 31,000 citations to his body of work.

Prof. Marcela Gonzalez-Gross presented Physical activity: core of a healthy life style, and chaired the session Energy balance and active living

Marcela Gonzalez-Gross is a Professor for Sports Nutrition and Exercise Physiology at the Department of Health and Human Performance of the Technical University of Madrid. She is the Head of the Nutrition, exercise and healthy lifestyle research group (ImFINE). For more than 20 years she has been analysing the nutritional and fitness status and its impact on both functional and cognitive function of healthy subjects with different levels of physical activity, especially adolescents and the elderly. Main research aspects include early diagnosis of subclinical vitamin deficiency, optimal hydration, improvement of life quality and health education. She has received several research awards and published over 160 articles in JCR (Journal Citation Reports) journals.

EUFIC interviewed 5 other excellent speakers with messages relevant to the European public. They gave an overview of their own studies and global developments, on topics like sweetness and satiety, eating behaviour in European pre-schoolers, micronutrient intake in European adolescents, relevance of meal timing and the role of proteins in weight management.

Dr France Bellisle presented Sweetness, satiation, and satiety

Following her Masters Degree in experimental psychology, France Bellisle worked at the College de France in Paris in the laboratory of Jacques Le Magnen. She obtained Doctorate degrees from the University of Paris. From 1982, she worked in French National Research Institutes (CNRS, INRA). She developed original research in the field of human ingestive behaviours. Her research interests cover all types of determinants of food and fluid intake in human consumers, including psychological, sensory and metabolic factors and environmental influences. She has published over 200 articles (original data and reviews) in international peer-reviewed journals and contributed to several books.

Asst. Prof. Yannis Manios presented Preschool childhood obesity: A review of existing studies and the first results of the ToyBox-study

Associate Professor in the Department of Nutrition and Dietetics, Harokopio University, Athens; specialised in Nutritional Assessment, Counselling and Health Promotion.
His research interests are focusing on the promotion of a healthy and active lifestyle and the prevention or treatment of obesity and obesity related chronic diseases throughout the lifespan. Actively involved as a Principal Investigator in Νational and European research programmes such as, PHYTOHEALTH, HELENA, ENERGY, HabEat, Full4Health, Food4Me, while currently is the coordinator for the ToyBox-study (FP7). He has authored more than 260 research papers published in international journals and has received seven awards for his scientific work by national and international organisations.

Dr Inge Huybrechts presented Dietary intake in European adolescents: Issues and controversies

Dr Inge Huybrechts is a nutritionist with a main interest in dietary intake assessment methodologies. She obtained her PhD in Medical Sciences in the Ghent University in 2008 and has afterwards been working in the same University as a Professor-assistant. In 2012 she moved to Lyon to start working in the Dietary Exposure Assessment Group at the International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC) in Lyon (France). At IARC she is involved in several projects and networks that aim at the standardisation of dietary intake assessment methods for dietary monitoring. Although Dr. Huybrechts has been working in all age-groups, her main expertise is in children and adolescents, a challenging age-group when it comes to dietary intake assessment methods.

Prof. Marta Garaulet presented Circadian rhythms, food timing and obesity

Marta Garaulet Aza, PhD, is a Professor of Physiology and Nutrition in the Department of Physiology at the University of Murcia, Spain, where she is the director of the Obesity Research group. She has a Master in Public Health from Harvard University and she is currently a visiting professor in the Department of Sleep Medicine at Harvard Medical School and in the Deparment of Nutrition and Genomics at Tufts University, Boston, Massachusetts. She has supervised 15 doctoral theses, and published more than 150 papers in different high impact journal. Among her different lines of research she has been interested in the particular relationship between Chronobiology, Obesity, and Weight Loss in the context of a Mediterranean Diet. Moreover, Dr. Garaulet´s recent research focuses on methods to improve the effectiveness in the dietary treatment of obesity throughout the characterisation of the patient, using current techniques in chronobiology. She has received two relevant awards in the last years: The European award in endocrinology and obesity: Awarded by the "Nutrition and Santé" (2011). Dr Gregorio Marañón Award: Spanish Academy of Gastronomy and Nutrition. Best researcher in Nutrition in Spain in year 2012.

Mikkel Zöllner Ankarfeld presented Comparison of intervention and COHORT study of dietary protein in body weight regulation. Reconciling opposing evidence.

Mikkel Zöllner Ankarfeldt has a master in public health science. With a great interest in evidence-based practice and the gap between science and practice he is very interested in the discussion of translation and use of scientific knowledge. Inspired by the literature that have a critical view on the hierarchy of evidence, Mikkel is currently doing a PhD about conflicting results from randomised, controlled trials and observational studies. For this Mikkel is using the example of dietary protein and weight change.

 

For more information:
ICN 2013: Scientific Programme

Full podcast
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The European Food Information Council (EUFIC) is a non-profit organisation which communicates science-based information on nutrition and health, food safety and quality, to help consumers to be better informed when choosing a well-balanced, safe and healthful diet.

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