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From The CriticsReviewer: Amy Hess-Fischl, MS, RD, LDN, BC-ADM, CDE (University of Chicago Medical Center)
Description: This compendium of up-to-date nutrition research and recommendations on all parts of the spectrum is a nice introduction to many important nutrition topics healthcare professionals should know. The previous edition was published in 2006.
Purpose: The purpose is to create a comprehensive collection of the most recent nutrition research and recommendations. This concise book hits the mark. While it does not go into great depth, it at least covers the important components and enables readers to search out more detailed information elsewhere.
Audience: As the editor of the Nutrition and Health series states, patients rely on their healthcare professionals for nutrition advice and these professionals need a resource that can give them the information they need to have a meaningful conversation. This is a great resource for practicing healthcare professionals. It presumes some prior knowledge, so first-year students may not be the best audience. The three editors have all been extensively involved in research in nutrition and health.
Features: The chapters cover 26 different topics, many of them related to nutrition and chronic health conditions such as diabetes, obesity, cardiovascular disease, hypertension and cancer. Each chapter topic could very well be a book in and of itself, but chapters begin with key points, giving readers an overview of what will be covered, and deliver the important recommendations needed by practicing healthcare professionals. The book also covers public health topics, eating patterns, and nutrition anthropology, as well as alcoholic and nonalcoholic beverages. One chapter covers nutrition for exercise and sports and, while I have several books on this subject, this chapter provides some valuable resources that are readily available for when I see patients. It includes extensive tables about proposed nutritional ergogenic aids for athletes — those containing carbohydrates, protein and amino acids, vitamins, and minerals. Since many of the teens and young adults with diabetes I work with frequently ask me about the validity of certain products, this is a perfect resource for me to pull out to discuss the proposed value as well as a summary of research findings. While it does not go into great depth on each topic, this is not a shortcoming as the book is not designed for that.
Assessment: This book covers a lot of ground. It can be a valuable resource for all healthcare professionals who need the most up-to-date information when talking to their patients. As a comprehensive overview of a variety of topics, this can be an excellent tool for healthcare professionals to enhance their knowledge about nutrition.