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U of I Nutrition Symposium features expert on the obesity epidemic April 18

Published March 13, 2012
What will it really take to reverse the obesity epidemic? Obesity expert James O. Hill will address the complexity of this problem in the keynote address of the 2012 University of Illinois Nutritional Sciences Graduate Student Association Nutrition Symposium. The event will take place on Wednesday, April 18, from 4 to 5 p.m. in 134 Temple Hoyne Buell Hall on the U of I campus. The lecture is open to the public.

"Our efforts to reduce obesity rates should involve strategies directed toward individuals, families, communities, and societies. Current strategies could be improved with a better understanding of the complex factors that have led to the development of this problem," Hill said.

Hill is director of the Colorado Nutrition Obesity Research Center and executive director of the Anschutz Health and Wellness Center. As a member of the Expert Panel on Obesity of the National Institutes of Health, he helped develop the first U.S. guidelines for the treatment and prevention of obesity.

A professor of pediatrics and medicine at the University of Colorado School of Medicine and director of the Colorado Health Sciences Center, his research focuses on the translating the science of weight management into simple, effective programs that work in the community.

Hill co-founded the National Weight Control Registry, which follows over 6,000 people who have successfully achieved and maintained a weight loss. He is also co-founder of "America on the Move," a national weight-gain prevention initiative that encourages Americans to make small changes in how much they eat and how much they move.

He is the author of the Step Diet Book (2004), along with more than 350 scientific articles and book chapters about obesity.

"I'm extremely excited that the graduate students in the Division of Nutritional Sciences were able to secure one of the world leaders in obesity prevention research. Dr. Jim Hill, former president of the American Society for Nutrition, is a well-recognized leader in the field and is known as a wonderful speaker," said DNS Director Rodney Johnson.

In addition to Dr. Hill's keynote address, a mini-symposium on Wednesday morning will feature the work of world-class U of I researchers on the topic "Gastrointestinal Microbiomes: Nutrient Utilization, Health, and Disease."

Faculty presenters include Bryan A. White, Division of Nutritional Sciences, Division of Biomedical Sciences, and Department of Animal Sciences; Kelly S. Swanson, Division of Nutritional Sciences, Department of Animal Sciences, and Department of Veterinary Clinical Medicine; Sharon M. Donovan, Division of Nutritional Sciences, Department of Food Science and Human Nutrition, and Department of Pediatrics; and Isaac K.O. Cann of the Department of Animal Sciences and the Department of Microbiology.

From 12:45 to 3:30 p.m., graduate student oral presentations will highlight DNS research. A poster session will take place, and hors d'oeuvres will be served from 5:15 to 6:30 p.m. A special awards presentation will complete the symposium at 6:30 p.m.

The Nutrition Symposium is sponsored by Abbott Nutrition, the Dairy Research Institute, the Kellogg Company, Kraft Foods, Mead Johnson Nutrition, PepsiCo, and Wrigley. Symposium friends include Coca-Cola, the General Mills Bell Institute of Health and Nutrition, the U of I Departments of Animal Science, Food Science and Human Nutrition, and Kinesiology and Community Health.

For more information, contact the Division of Nutritional Sciences at 217-333-4177 or or visit .