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Invited Commentary
June 2014

Nutrition in Medical Education: From Counting Hours to Measuring Competence

Author Affiliations
  • 1Department of Nutrition, Food Studies, and Public Health, New York University, New York, New York
  • 2Division of General Internal Medicine, Department of Medicine, School of Medicine, University of California, San Francisco
JAMA Intern Med. 2014;174(6):843-844. doi:10.1001/jamainternmed.2014.440

Conditions related to nutrition are commonly seen in clinical practice, yet few physicians have the knowledge, experience, or time to discuss how patients’ diets affect their health. Over the last half century, many individuals and groups have called for more and better nutrition instruction during medical education. The most recent plea is in this issue of JAMA Internal Medicine. Nathaniel Morris,1 a student at Harvard Medical School, is acutely aware of the importance of diet in preventing and treating chronic diseases and is uneasy about the limited training he and his classmates are getting to handle the dietary problems of so many of his future patients. “As a medical student,” Morris writes, “I cannot fathom why medical schools continue to neglect nutrition education.”1

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