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Early Nutrition and Long-term Health

      The nutrition of an individual during gestation and the first two years of life—the first 1,000 days—sets the stage for lifelong health.—Woodhead Publishing
      A president is often judged on his or her potential and effectiveness by looking at the first 100 days in office. This book challenges us to pay attention to early-term events: those in nutrition, from the time of conception to the toddler stage.
      Saavedra and Dattilo have done a remarkable job on organizing and editing contributions from over 40 international authors. This has resulted in a comprehensive look at how early nutrition contributes to communicable and noncommunicable diseases later in life. Of considerable interest to dietetic professionals are chapters that explore the impact of early nutrition on the development of allergic diseases, celiac disease, and type 2 diabetes.
      Reinforcing the importance of breastfeeding, these chapters also look at the intrauterine environment and how the fetus can adapt to an adverse environment that may include resetting of the metabolism, leading to an increased risk of type 2 diabetes and obesity.
      Expecting latest information on the treatment and prevention of celiac disease proved disappointing because, as per the authors, “clinical trials need to be performed to further clarify the role of early nutrition on later development of celiac disease.” This book reviews past and present research that indicates the often-referenced window of opportunity for the introduction of gluten does not appear to modify the risk of the development of celiac disease.
      Of special interest to nutrition professionals practicing in public health are chapters associating parenting styles and family environment to long-term diet and eating patterns with a heightened emphasis on responsiveness to hunger and satiety.
      Each chapter is well referenced and freestanding, containing multiple tables and figures that add to an understanding of the material. The sequential flow of each chapter facilitates easy navigation to the specific sections of material. Especially interesting are sections that address future trends and research, because many of the concepts in this book are emerging and experimental.
      One thing that would have been extremely helpful, especially if this book were adopted for use in a college or university classroom, would be a set of discussion questions at the end of each chapter. The material in the text could also be useful for case study development to enhance student learning.
      Cite this article as Vogelzang J. Early Nutrition and Long-term Health [New Resources for Nutrition Educators]. J Nutr Educ Behav. 2017;49:608.