by Marion Nestle
Apr 21 2022

The FDA needs to take on obesity (and so do other government health agencies)

In response to my post last week about problems at the FDA, I received an emailed note from Jerry Mande, whom I met years ago when he was at USDA, and is now a visiting fellow at the Harvard School of Public Health.

Terrific piece today, but you should have called for the need for FDA to focus much more on the chronic disease risks of food. It’s catastrophic that they have taken only one truly regulatory action (banning trans fat) to improve diet and health…Commissioner Califf needs to put the F back in FDA only 7% of CFSAN’s budget is used for improving diet quality and nutrition, which accounts for 99%+ of food related poor health…The bottom line, as you know better than anyone, is there are more deaths every day due to poor quality diets than in a year due to acute illnesses…I urge you to consider that when you write more on this topic. You could start by featuring our op-ed in your blog. Thx!

The op-ed is indeed worth a read.

But, in fact, this topic has been on my mind since Politico’s Helena Bottemiller Evich wrote Diet-related diseases pose a major risk for Covid-19.  But the U.S. overlooks them, back in October.

Her article, which focused on the lack of government attention to the risks posed by obesity for chronic disease and COVID-19, inspired me to write an editorial for the American Journal of Public Health.  I’m told it’s going online tonight (if it does, I will post it tomorrow).