Tulane researcher selected to serve on federal Dietary Guidelines Advisory Committee

The U.S. Departments of Agriculture and Health and Human Services selected Tulane University clinical researcher and epidemiologist Dr. Lydia Bazzano as one of 20 nationally recognized nutrition experts to serve on the 2020 Dietary Guidelines Advisory Committee.

The independent committee will help federal officials draft the next update to the Dietary Guidelines for Americans, which serve as the cornerstone of federal nutrition programs and policies. The guidelines, which are updated every five years, provide food-based recommendations to help prevent diet-related chronic diseases and promote overall health.

“I'm honored and excited to be able to contribute my expertise to the 2020 Guidelines,” said Bazzano, Lynda B. and H. Leighton Steward Professor in Nutrition Research at Tulane University School of Public Health and Tropical Medicine and medical director of the Bogalusa Heart Study. “The guidelines serve as a pillar for counseling Americans about a healthy diet and they are used to inform public health policy and federal nutrition programs.”

The next edition of the guidelines will take a life-stage approach for dietary recommendations and for the first time, will include recommendations for pregnant women and children from birth to 24 months.

The committee will review scientific evidence on specific nutrition and health related topics and scientific questions that, for the first time, reflect both public comments and federal agency input. Throughout their deliberations, the public and other stakeholders will be encouraged to provide comments and feedback.

 “The scientists we selected to serve on the committee are national leaders in the areas of nutrition and health,” said HHS Secretary Alex Azar. “HHS, USDA, and all Americans will benefit from the collective experience and expertise of the committee, which will conduct a rigorous examination of the scientific evidence on several diet-related health outcomes, including the prevention of cancer, type 2 diabetes, and cardiovascular disease, which are three of the leading causes of death in the United States.”

The full list of members appointed to the expert committee is online at DietaryGuidelines.gov.