FENS 2015

Sabri Ülker Foundation attended 12th European Nutrition Conference
October 20–23, 2015, FENS, Berlin

The most important nutrition organization in Europe!

The Federation of European Nutrition Societies (FENS) is a non-profit organization established by the nutrition associations of 26 European countries. FENS is regarded as one of Europe's most influential nutrition organizations among member countries and associations.

Its mission is to improve the education and research conducted in these areas by emphasizing the importance of nutrition and public health. The federation also provides the coordination between nutrition associations of the European countries, performs studies on nutrition and informs the society and organizes the European Nutrition Conference every four years.

The European Nutrition Conference serves a vital purpose, bringing all nutrition organizations in Europe together to exchange ideas on critical items on the global health agenda.

To date, the event has always seen strong participation from almost all of Europe. The German Nutrition Foundation hosted the event in Berlin from October 20–23, 2015. The Sabri Ülker Foundation was the only Turkish institution that participated in the 12th FENS European Nutrition Conference, carried out with the theme, “nutrition and health throughout the life-course.”

The foundation brought the issue of information pollution to the table!

The Sabri Ülker Food Research Foundation brought “Information Pollution in Health” to Turkey’s attention at the 12th European Nutrition Conference, in collaboration with international institutions and organizations. The association raised public awareness on the importance of obtaining information on proper nutrition and health from objective, scientific, and trustworthy sources, in line with the opinions of internationally recognized scientists.

Prior to the 12th European Nutrition Conference, which shed light on the global world of health, the foundation had organized a press conference with Dr. Laura Fernández Celemín, Ph.D., Director General of the European Food Information Council, and Begüm Mutuş, the General Manager the Sabri Ülker Foundation.

General Manager Mutuş made a speech at this foundation-hosted event, and pointed out that nutrition is one of the most important determining factors of individual and public health.

Mutuş explained, “One of the cornerstones of a healthy life is nutrition. The words of Hippocrates, the founder of medicine, “Let food be thy medicine and medicine be thy food” is a guide for all of us. However, information pollution surrounding nutrition and food can mislead people. With the advance of technology, people can easily reach information about health and nutrition issues. However, at the same time, they also face the risk of accessing fake information. At this point, the communication of scientifically proven data is very important.”

The goal of the foundation is to become an esteemed organization!

Mutuş highlighted Sabri Ülker Foundation’s goal of being an esteemed organization in the struggle against information pollution in Turkey, and drew attention to the collaborations the foundation has made with internationally respected and trusted institutions. She pointed out that health information pollution is a critical problem not just for Turkey but also globally, and acknowledged that national and international institutions have a duty to eradicate it.

Europe is longing for accurate information in health!

Dr. Celemín highlighted research that the EUFIC has conducted on this issue.

She spoke of the organization’s review of 375 news items with the headline “nutrition” in the newspapers of eight Federation of European Nutrition Societies (FENS) member countries in two-week periods during 2011 and 2012, and noted that 49 percent of these were unsubstantiated.

Celemín went on to say, “As can be understood from this, there is serious information pollution surrounding nutrition, and it threatens consumers’ health. Naturally, everybody is searching for the ways for better nutrition. Therefore, authorities and communication channels which play a major role in informing the public have major duties.

Science Reporters Should Be Trained

Prof. Diana Banati, Ph.D., Director of the International Life Sciences Institute Europe (ILSI Europe), outlined her opinion on information pollution, asserting, “We can say that information pollution exists either because scientists do not have enough knowledge and experience in talking to and conveying information to reporters, or that journalists do not express what is communicated accurately. However, I think that the main reason is that there is very low number of reporters specialized in science. The universities educating scientists should give training about how scientific information could be presented to public in an easy-to-understand language.

Establishing a true communication is a must

Information pollution in health was discussed in a panel organized under the title of “Chats, Tweets and More: Nutrition Communication in Public Health” in the European Nutrition Conference.

Prof. Pekka Puska, M.D., Ph.D., Director of the International Association of National Public Health Institutes (IANPHI), said, “Every research outcome in the field of health and nutrition is introduced to public as new information. Also, the outcomes of research generally do not consider the effects of a product or nutrient within the frame of diet namely as a whole, they are interested in one aspect of nutrition and do not include outcomes regarding cause and effect relationship. Even when an element is labeled “hazardous” or “life-saving,” it is not likely that this nutrient or product alone has a huge impact on human health. A more integrated approach to the issue is necessary. Confusion in public originates generally from these.

Prof. Puska also stated that alongside the basic nutritional information that should be given by experts and government, practical recommendations about how people can change their nutritional habits should also be provided.

The Federation of European Nutrition Societies (FENS) is a non-profit organization which brings together the nutrition societies of 26 different European countries. FENS plays a key role in nutrition activities throughout Europe and beyond. In addition to its co-ordinating role the federation undertakes studies on nutrition, informs a wide range of stakeholders on nutrition issues and organizes the European Nutrition Conference every four years. The 12th European Nutrition Conference (FENS 12) was hosted by the German Nutrition Society in Berlin from October 20th to 23rd, 2015. Click for more..

Why is it important to determine the communication strategies that depends on impactful and credible scientific researches on public health?

Individuals are increasingly relying on nutrition and health-related information from both traditional and social media. But exposure to incorrect media reporting can sometimes adversely influence public perceptions leading to uninformed consumer choices.To help people to be better informed when choosing a well-balanced, safe and healthful diet and lifestyle, we must ensure that what we communicate has the backing of the scientific community, academics, nutritionists and dietitians, health professionals, but also parents, teachers and elected officials. Click for more..
Why is it important to determine the communication strategies that depends on impactful and credible scientific researches on public health?

Nutrition is one of the most important determinants of the health of both individuals and populations. Thus decisions and choices of people and governments should be based on good information. This calls for good communication. We know that in modern societies nutrition communication by experts and governments has huge challenges. Click for more..
112TH European Nutrition Conference (FENS) was organized by German Nutrition Society (DGE) on 20-23 October 2015.
The aim of this Conference was to communicate up to date information that could help the European citizens and consumers to manage a successful life and stay healthy in all age periods. The knowledge of the members of our European Nutrition Societies and their friends was become relevant for this ambitious goal, expecting intense scientific debates. In the line with this goal of the FENS, the conference was put under the slogan 'Nutrition and health throughout life-cycle - Science for the European consumer'. Click for more..
Its missions are to emphasize the importance of nutrition and community health, to improve the education and research done in these areas and to provide the communication between nutrition associations of European countries. In line with these goals, FENS holds a nutrition conference every four years. The event is organized by a member country and the first of the European Nutrition Conference was held in England in 1973. Following the great interest it has attracted, the conference was planned to be repeated in Germany, and upon Sweden’s request, FENS was established. The federation, which was officially established in 1979, takes place with a different host each time and provides the coordination between nutrition associations of European countries. Click for more..


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