WASHINGTON – The US Dept. of Agriculture released a Nutrition Research Roadmap that will guide interagency research on human nutrition that will provide more customized advice for consumers.

The guide identifies three key questions:

  • How do we better understand and define eating patterns to improve and sustain health?
  • What can be done to help people choose healthy eating patterns?
  • How can we develop and engage innovative methods and systems to accelerate discoveries in human nutrition?


“Nutritional needs differ according to a number of factors, including an individual’s age, their health status and their level of physical activity,” said Catherine Woteki, Ph.D., M.S., USDA Under Secretary for Research, Education, and Economics and Chief Scientist. “Those needs can be tailored according to personal preferences, enabling each person to choose the foods that are right for them. The priorities outlined in the Roadmap will help us identify knowledge gaps and research opportunities that can help consumers make healthy choices.”

The Interagency Committee on Human Nutrition Research (ICHNR) released the Nutrition Research Roadmap, which emphasizes addressing research gaps between nutrition-related chronic diseases and health disparities, especially in at-risk populations such as pregnant women, children and older adults.

“Healthy eating is one of the most powerful tools we have to reduce the onset of chronic diseases related to nutrition like obesity, heart disease and diabetes,” said Karen B. DeSalvo, M.D., M.P.H., M.Sc., HHS Acting Assistant Secretary for Health. “By focusing, in part, on developing a better understanding of the gaps in the evidence for healthier eating, the Roadmap will help provide an evidence base for supporting easy, accessible, and affordable healthy food choices.”

Woteki and DeSalvo are co-chairs of the ICHNR. The full Roadmap is available here: