The Great Debate: What's a Healthy Food?

Consumers are seeking simple ways to find ‘healthy’ foods in the grocery store aisles and restaurants. Governments have to define ‘healthy’ foods for policies and regulations. The internet is filled with movie stars and social influencers touting the latest healthy diets - all adding to this confusion.

Canada has just launched a new Food Guide and committed to introducing regulations requiring Front of Pack Warning Labels on unhealthy foods and also prohibiting the marketing of these foods to children. This seminar will overview these and other exciting developments that are happening in Canada and around the world to help consumers choose healthier foods and how these healthier foods are being identified.

The lecture can be viewed here.

The poster for this talk can be viewed here. 


Mary L'Abbé, CM, PHD 

Professor, Department of Nutritional Sciences, Faculty of Medicine, University of Toronto, and
Director, WHO Collaborating Centre on Nutrition Policy for Chronic Disease Prevention

Dr. Mary L’Abbé is an expert in public health nutrition, nutrition policy, and food and nutrition regulations and in 2018 was named to the Order of Canada. Her research examines the nutritional quality of the Canadian food supply, nutrient profiling methods used to define ‘healthy foods’, dietary intake patterns, and consumer research on food choices related to obesity and chronic disease. She has authored over 250 peer reviewed publications and reports. Professor L’Abbé is a member of the WHO Dietary Guidelines Committee, chairs the PAHO Technical Advisory Group on Sodium and was a member of the US National Academies of Science Panel for Global Harmonization in setting nutrient requirements.

 Prof. L'Abbé’s group has developed two large national food databases, which have been used to answer a number of policy related research questions and that serve as the basis of their consumer apps.