At the turn of the 21st century, the "balanced diet" and the recommendations it supports remain key concepts. At least in the society of abundance that characterizes most of the occidental and industrialized countries, new nutrition concepts need to be developed and new dietary recommendations need to be elaborated as new challenges have appeared (Figure 1.2). These challenges include, among others:
• Growing costs of medical care
• Increase in life expectancy
• Progress in scientific knowledge, especially in the biological and the medical sciences
• Application of new technologies to food development, food production, and food storage
• Major changes in lifestyles
Moreover, according to the new definition recently proposed by the World Health Organization (WHO) "health" is not only absence of disease but includes physical and psychological well-being. Thus, nutrition must adapt by developing new concepts and, consequently, by elaborating additional recommendations.
GROWING COSTS of MEDICAL CARE INCREASE IN LIFE EXPECTANCY SCIENTIFIC PROGRESSES in BIOMEDICAL SCIENCE NEW TECHNOLOGIES in FOOD PRODUCTION CHANGES IN LIFESTYLES NEW DEFINITION OF HEALTH (WHO )
FIGURE 1.2 Summary of the main challenges of the science of nutrition at the turn of the 20th century.
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When over eighty years of age, the poet Bryant said that he had added more than ten years to his life by taking a simple exercise while dressing in the morning. Those who knew Bryant and the facts of his life never doubted the truth of this statement.