Food Innovation Center

Collaborating for a healthier, hunger-free world.

Center member advises government on new dietary guidelines for Americans

Cheryl Achterberg, professor of human nutrition and inaugural member of the Food Innovation Center at The Ohio State University, has played a major role in new federal recommendations about the proper nutrition Americans need to stay healthy and fit.

 Source: College of Education and Human Ecology. Posted 1-31-2011.

The U.S. departments of Agriculture and Health and Human Services unveiled the 2010 Dietary Guidelines Monday, Jan. 31, in Washington, D.C. Achterberg and 12 other prominent medical and scientific researchers were members of the 2010 Dietary Guidelines Advisory Committee, which suggested revisions to the 2005 Dietary Guidelines. 

Cheryl Achterberg"The Dietary Guidelines are the primary policy tool for nutrition recommendations, standards and education in U.S. schools, communities and the public health system," said Achterberg, who is dean of the College of Education and Human Ecology. "They are also key to setting the standard for calculating poverty in the U.S. and serve as a benchmark around the world for translating science to the public.

"It was a high honor to serve both my discipline and the public on the 2010 Dietary Guidelines Advisory Committee."

Achterberg was selected because she has evaluated the impact of behavior on the dietary patterns of populations, including multiethnic, low-income and elderly Americans. She has served on panels for numerous groups, including the World Health Organization, the Institute of Medicine, and the United Nations as an expert in nutrition education and community interventions.

"Dr. Achterberg's work in the behavioral aspect of what people eat exemplifies what's at the core of the field of family and consumer sciences – the integrative nature of addressing basic human needs," said Carolyn W. Jackson, executive director of the American Association of Family and Consumer Sciences (AAFCS).

"Whether it's in how we determine what food we eat, the money we spend, or the way we raise our children, we know that decisions are not made in a vacuum. And FCS professionals provide a systems approach to help people make everyday decisions that impact their quality of life."

Between October 2008 and June 2010, the advisory committee conducted the first evidence-based and most comprehensive review of scientific literature for the Dietary Guidelines to date, Achterberg said.

After considering its report, along with public comment and deliberation in open forums, the Department of Agriculture released final recommendations in January. They are available at