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October 17, 1986


JAMA. 1986;256(15):2097-2099. doi:10.1001/jama.1986.03380150107032

A year ago, the National Research Council announced that it would be unable to issue the tenth edition of the Recommended Dietary Allowances, as had previously been scheduled. This decision resulted from persistent disagreement between the committee that had been charged with drafting the new edition, on the one hand, and the outside reviewers, supported by the parent committee, the Food and Nutrition Board, on the other. Part of the problem was one of definitions. Since their inception in the early 1940s, the recommended dietary allowances have served many functions—some of which now appear to be mutually incompatible. Furthermore, public health interests have shifted from merely preventing nutritional deficiencies to slowing the development of nutritionrelated chronic diseases. These and other issues are summarized in a background statement, which should help better define the process of developing the recommended dietary allowances in the future.1

Explicit health claims on food labels