More than one hundred delegates including international scientists convened in London last month for a conference to focus on the role of nutrition in healthy ageing.
A range of topics – from the health benefits of vitamin A and the impact of N-3 fatty acids on cardiovascular health, cognition and joints, to a public policy perspective on aligning healthcare and nutritional support for the elderly – came under the spotlight, with panellists reviewing strategies, including the use of food supplements, which could help modulate the age-related decline in most organ functions and the development and progression of many chronic diseases.
The event, titled ‘Nutrition, Healthy Ageing and Public Policy’, took place on November 6 and was organised by UK trade association the Council for Responsible Nutrition (CRN).
“Healthy ageing could be the key to reducing healthcare costs,” said Professor David Richardson, scientific advisor to CRN (UK). “Safe nutritional interventions, including the greater use of food supplements, are effective ways to ensure the provision of micronutrients and other substances with beneficial physiological effects, to maximise the span of good health and to improve the quality of life of older people.”
He added: “There is a substantial need for detailed cost benefit econometric studies and for further scientific research on the nutritional, social, economic and cultural aspects of ageing.”
Speakers at the event included Dr Anthony Leeds, senior lecturer in King’s College division of Nutritional Sciences, Dr Anne Minihane from the University of Reading, Professor Hans Konrad Biesalski, head of the Department of Biological Chemistry and Human Nutrition at Germany’s University of Hohenheim, and Paul Cann from international charity, Help the Aged.
The Council for Responsible Nutrition (CRN) is the UK trade association representing the leading manufacturers and suppliers of food supplements.