Friday, July 17, 2009

KOPN Food Sleuth: Investigative nutrition

One of my favorite RD's bringing the truth about food to the American public is Melinda Hemmelgarn.

Her new radio show is available online and she has already had some great guest like Roger Dorion, Founding Director Kitchen Gardeners International, Robyn O'Brien author of The Unhealthy Truth and Julie Fischer on the Missouri CAFO issues.

Melinda Hemmelgarn is a registered dietitian, newspaper columnist, and freelance writer and speaker. She has written her trademarked weekly "Food Sleuth" column for the Columbia Daily Tribune since 1989, and it now appears in a variety of publications nationwide. The "Food Sleuth" mission is to "digest" nutrition research, expose diet fraud and help consumers think beyond their plates.

Melinda's launch into media work began when she learned that most consumers receive their nutrition and health information through the media. She developed (and for 15 years directed) the Nutrition Communications Center at the University of Missouri, where she wrote a nationally distributed newsletter, conducted hundreds of media interviews annually, and instructed dietetic and science journalism students.

Motivated by escalating childhood obesity rates and the inability to effect significant change through traditional nutrition education strategies, Melinda turned her attention to food marketing, advertising directed towards youth, and children's "media diets." She joined the Alliance for a Media Literate America in 2001 and has been conducting national workshops blending media literacy with nutrition education ever since.

Melinda is a member of the American Dietetic Association's Hunger and Environmental Nutrition Practice Group, the Society for Nutrition Education, and the Missouri Association for Social Welfare's Hunger Task Force. She is also a new member of the Association for Health Care Journalists, and an affiliate member of the University of Missouri's Center for Health Policy.

Melinda describes herself as a "change-agent," working to improve public health and create a more just and sustainable food system.

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