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A New Approach to Nutrition and Obesity Research

People are profoundly tuned in to the fact that obesity and all the chronic disease that goes with it are plaguing much of the world. But, why, with such hyperawareness plus so many research developments on the nutrition and obesity fronts, do we still seem to be getting fatter and sicker?

Peter Attia, MD, and Gary Taubes, founders of the newly launched San Diego–based Nutrition Science Initiative (NuSI), have an idea or two about that. Mainly, they ask, what if we’ve got it all wrong? What if all the research that leads to the recommendations we get from the scientific community about nutrition and weight loss is flawed? They propose that official dietary guidelines are not based on rigorous science and may well contribute to the problem, doing far more harm than good.

Attia and Taubes set up their nonprofit organization with a simply stated, yet lofty, mission: to reduce the economic and social burden of obesity and obesity-related chronic disease by improving the quality of science in nutrition and obesity research.

“NuSI is unencumbered by bureaucracy or by an obligation to do anything other than find the truth. We can move quickly and efficiently to execute a novel plan: Harness the talents of the best scientists in the field and channel their skills into one concerted effort to generate reliable knowledge, once and for all, on the nature of a healthy diet,” says the NuSI website.

“We build teams of multi­disciplinary researchers from
independent universities and
institutions, and we make it possible for them to do targeted, cutting-edge experiments that will directly address the key questions of obesity and health. We
then communicate the results to all audiences. Everyone deserves the truth.”

Stay tuned. We will be following this with interest. Learn more at

Sandy Todd Webster

Sandy Todd Webster is the editor in chief of IDEA’s award-winning publications. She is Precision Nutrition Level 1 certified and is a Rouxbe Certified Plant-Based Professional cook.

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