Our Goal is Simple
Make nutrition easy to understand, and provide you with reliable and responsible sources of science-based nutrition. Oh yeah, we also think this should be fun and fabulously delicious.
That’s right – we said fun and delicious!
Food should convey health, not disease. What you eat has been altered. Significantly. Processed foods have changed what people eat. Nutrition is stripped. Fiber is removed. And sugar is added. A lot of sugar. The food supply has been adulterated. Worldwide. Human and environmental health are imperiled. Added sugar is found in 77% of grocery store items. Adding sugar makes packaged foods shelf stable. These food additives are good for profits but bad for you.
But, where do you start if bad food is everywhere?
We start by educating ourselves, and establishing some trusted sources of information that aren’t trying to sell us us something that is bad for our health.
The Nutrition Toolbox is hosted by the Institute for Responsible Nutrition, a nonprofit organization that works with hundreds of leaders and experts in the nutrition field. The IRN was founded by doctors who have witnessed childhood obesity become tragically common in one generation. We are joined by many distinguished partners in the fields of health, nutrition, and food.
They say it’s all because we eat too much and burn off too little; too many calories in, and too few out. Well, that’s not the whole truth. Not all calories are created equal. As world renown neuroendocrinologist Dr. Robert Lustig explains, a calorie is not a calorie. The World Health Organization recommends limiting sugar to 10% of your diet – and 5% for maximum health benefit. That’s about 12 teaspoons maximum a day – and preferably no more than 6 teaspoons (if you want to save your teeth!). The Harvard School of Public Health says a typical American eats and drinks 22 teaspoons worth of added sugar each day. Even Credit Suisse, one of the world’s largest finance institutions, thinks sugar is turning our economy sour.
But, the Times They Are A-Changin’
Every day we see new signs that there is a seismic shift in the way we are eating. Together, we can start a movement. A movement toward unprocessed, real foods, foods that bring wellness not illness.
We believe the world can be a healthier place. We are joined by hundreds of partner organizations who also believe that learning about nutrition should be easy, fun, and practical. We are here to share research, educate and advise. We’re here to let you know you’re not alone. We can help you beat the odds against sugar, processed foods, obesity, and disease.
So, let’s start exploring the toolbox! You can use the easy to understand menus, the search bar if you are looking for a particular topic, or wander through the glossary which lists terms used on this site. If you can’t find what you are looking for, please send us an email, and we will do our best to respond and update the site with the information you need.
Common Sense Nutrition – Free of FlimFlam
We use common sense criteria to filter information on this site. Here are a few examples.
- Consider the source. Is it coming from an individual or organization that has credibility in the nutrition science space? Does this individual or organization have any special interests or a [cm_tooltip_parse]conflict of interest[/cm_tooltip_parse] (e.g., the Gatorade Sports Science Institute) that isn’t declared? Does the source have an established track record and position in the nutrition science field? Are they trying to sell you a product, service, diet plan, philosophy, etc.? Are they making their point at the expense of others in the field?
- Content is king. What is the nature of the content? Does it start with a sensational headline, a list of the top ten things you should or shouldn’t eat, or use hyperbole to make its point? Are there any references to real data, peer reviewed science, or an established field of study? Are scientific elements referenced, or is it entirely opinion? Is there reference to a “study” but no original sources provided?
- Establish reliable relationships with sources that can be trusted. Pay attention to what they are saying. Establish the context of their work (medicine, nutrition, diet, policy, etc.). Truly effective food system change is about establishing and reestablishing relationships with primary sources of real-whole-natural food and those who have knowledge about food (farmers, chefs, nutrition scientists, doctors, public health advocates, etc.).
- Mythology, marketing, and [cm_tooltip_parse]flimflam[/cm_tooltip_parse]. Is the source promoting the idea that all calories are the same or “everything in moderation” thinking? The energy balance hypothesis? One size fits all diets? Is there something being sold? Who sponsors the site or information? Are there obvious conflicts of interest clouding their perspectives?