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Stanford expert discusses motivating Americans to make better nutritional choices

Article / Review by on September 29, 2011 – 11:48 pmNo Comments

Stanford expert discusses motivating Americans to make better nutritional choices

Stanford nutrition scientist Christopher Gardner, PhD, was featured this week in a Q&A with the Palo Alto Daily News. In the piece, Gardner talks about how educating the public on how food is produced can motivate people to change their eating habits, provides tips for evaluating the nutritional news and explains why you should avoid processed foods fortified with supplements. On the topic of dietary fads, such as nutrient-enriched foods, he says:

> If it’s something that in no way the human population could have evolved on – such as a new Omega-3-enriched Cheese Whiz – then I wish they would ignore those. It can’t be that all of a sudden there is a new scientific way to put nutrients into old junk foods and suddenly make them health foods. The super foods are items like broccoli, red bell peppers, and beans — not very sexy to write about, but good, solid, healthy foods.

> Also consider how food is when it (first) comes out of the ground or how it is raised — such as broccoli or grass-fed beef. If somebody has made it super-diced, spliced, deep-fried, sweetened, added layers of cellophane, (or made it into a) great new snack food, but it’s not broccoli or a rib-eye steak anymore, and it’s an enormous portion, I wish they would ignore those sort of wild claims (that the food is good for you).

Stanford expert discusses motivating Americans to make better nutritional choices

Next month, Gardner, along with other researchers and local food activists, will gather at Stanford for Food Summit 2. The one-day symposium will feature panels showcasing recent research projects aimed at improving eating among three distinct populations: at-risk middle school students, Stanford undergraduates and hospital patients.

More info at:  

* Registration for the event is free and can be completed here. 
** Photo by Rick Audet

Christopher Gardner, PhD. Associate Professor, Department of Medicine, Stanford UniversityChristopher Gardner, PhD. Bio.
Christopher Gardner
Academic Appointments
Associate Professor (Research), Medicine – Stanford Prevention Research
Member, Cancer Center

> Positions
1997-1999 Research Associate, Department of Medicine, Stanford University
1999-2001 Assistant Professor, Dept of Epidemiology and Prevention, UC Davis
2001-2007 Assistant Professor, Department of Medicine, Stanford University
2007-present Associate Professor, Department of Medicine, Stanford University

> Administrative Appointments
Education Committee, The Obesity Society (2009 – 2011)
Nutrition Committee, American Heart Association (2009 – 2011)

> Honors/Awards/Fellowships
1988 University of California Regents Fellowship
1989 Outstanding Teaching Assistant, Department of Nutritional Sciences
1994 AHA Fellow, 20th U.S. 10-day Seminar on Epidemiology & Prevention of CVD
1995-1997 American Heart Association Postdoctoral Training Grant Recipient
2003 Distinguished Honorary Award, San Jose State University Department of Nutrition
2005 Outstanding Teacher, SPRC, Department of Medicine

> Education/ Training 
Colgate University, Hamilton, NY B.A. 1977-1981 Philosophy
University of California, Berkeley Ph.D. 1989-1993 Nutrition Science
Stanford University, California Post. Doc. 1993-1997 CVD Epidemiology

> Current Research Interests
The role of nutrition and preventive medicine, with particular interests in: plant-based diets and phytochemicals; cardiovascular disease and cancer prevention; weight loss diets; clinical trials and epidemiology.

> Clinical Trials
Effects of Glutathione (an antioxidant) and N-Acetylcysteine on Inflammation
Adding Sleep Intervention to Traditional Diet and Exercise Approach to Weight Loss
Effect of Fish Oil on Plasma Triglycerides in Adults
Effects of Dietary Antioxidants on Cardiovascular Risk Factors
Effects of Omega-3 Fatty Acids on Markers of Inflammation
Effects of Raw vs. Other Milk Sources on Lactose Digestion

***  The above story is adapted from materials provided by Stanford University School of Medicine 


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