NuSI has caught the attention of many, especially those who are experts in the areas of science, obesity, food policy, economics, and health.
“We spend billions of dollars each year on the health consequences of metabolic diseases such as obesity, diabetes, and their downstream consequences such as cardiovascular disease and cancer. We know that these are largely preventable but what is the optimal diet and how can we help Americans achieve a return to health? NuSI is tackling these tough questions with research that is vitally important to America.
We develop public policy on less than optimal data and NuSI aims to change that. They are taking a novel approach to tackling the critical questions – rapidly and with a high degree of scientific rigor. At the Florida Hospital – Sanford-Burnham Translational Research Institute, we are addressing the challenge through research focused on understanding the metabolic basis of obesity and obesity-related diabetes. Collaboration across a spectrum of clinical and basic scientists, each testing different hypotheses, yet coming together as a scientific community, is necessary if we are to develop thoughtful, innovative solutions to complex diseases of metabolism.”
Steven Smith, M.D.
Scientific Director, Florida Hospital – Sanford-Burnham Translational Research Institute
“In its heyday, nutrition science saved millions of lives by setting standards for food and vitamin intake that prevented undernutrition and deficiency diseases. Today we must turn again to nutrition science as we face epidemics of diabetes and obesity that are unprecedented in human history. Major unanswered questions include whether our bodies turn all food calories into fat in the same way, and whether all people are alike in this regard. NuSI, with its mission to develop and support unbiased studies that address these questions, is a welcome and potentially game-changing addition to the fight against diabetes and obesity.”
Mitch Lazar, M.D., Ph.D.
Director of the Institute for Diabetes, Obesity, and Metabolism at Perelman School of Medicine
“Gary Taubes, Peter Attia, and their colleagues at NuSI are doing what must be done: ensuring that the experiments that are absolutely necessarily to understand the relation of diet, diabetes and heart disease get done. This is a science-driven initiative, which I totally support. We won’t know the answer until the work is done and they are going to make sure the work gets done.”
Allan Sniderman, M.D.
Edwards Professor of Cardiology at McGill University
“The question of the right diet for Americans has seemingly been settled in the public health community for years, yet obesity rates continue to skyrocket. This stark contrast begs the questions-do we really have good science to support our diet recommendations? The answer is convincingly no. The largest public health crisis in the United States is being addressed with the type of data that we question in every other field of medicine: observational studies subject to selection bias and small scale, short term clinical studies which can’t offer definitive results. Further, we seemingly lack the courage to even test our convictions through the type of large scale NIH supported clinical research that has contributed to advances in so many other fields of medicine. It’s well past time for an effort such as that proposed by NuSI-to test our hypotheses with rigorous science. We owe this effort to the public and to our children who otherwise could suffer from the disastrous consequences of our scientific hubris on this issue.”
Kevin Schulman, M.D., MBA
Director of the Center for Clinical and Genetic Economics at Duke University
“For years, most scientists and clinicians interested in obesity made some basic assumptions. Recently, scientists around the world have reawakened interest in pursuing research into the effect that dietary constituents might have on caloric intake, energy expenditure, and body weight. These studies have turned up findings that are not easily explained by previously assumed scientific paradigms.
Scientific paradigm shifts occur only when standard dogmas are questioned and tested, but finding financial backing for such studies can be most difficult. The Nutrition Science Initiative (NuSI) is an example of a group of committed scientists, clinicians, and committed citizens interested in rigorously testing how dietary constituents can influence body weight, and the mechanisms underlying those effects. Groups like NuSI play an extraordinarily important role in science since the standard funding systems can become dominated by “experts” who consciously or subconsciously resist studies that fall outside the accepted dogma.”
David Harlan, M.D.
Chief of the Diabetes Division at the University of Massachusetts School of Medicine
“The ongoing economic crisis has taken a tremendous toll on biomedical research in the US. Federal funding levels have reached historic lows, as cash strapped hospitals and universities have curtained their traditional investments into science. At the same time, the costs of innovative clinical research involving obesity — the critical challenge of the 21st century — have escalated rapidly. For these reasons, the need for philanthropic support of nutrition research has never been greater. With a willingness to focus its resources on the most difficult and risky projects, an organization like NuSI can have a transformative impact, not only on scientific understanding, but also on public health.”
David Ludwig, M.D., Ph.D.
Professor of Pediatrics, Harvard Medical School Professor of Nutrition, Harvard School of Public Health
“NuSI’s approach to funding the best scientists in the field without the usual economic and risk constraints is critical for addressing some of the major unresolved questions in human nutrition. The meticulous control and monitoring of diet and energy balance that must be achieved in order to test their hypotheses requires extraordinary resources, and whatever the outcome, this approach is very likely to yield important metabolic information.”
Ron Krauss, M.D.
Senior Scientist and Director of Atherosclerosis Research at the Children’s Hospital of Oakland Research Institute