Coevolution of nutrigenomics and society: ethical considerations

M. Korthals

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

12 Citations (Scopus)


To optimize the coevolution of nutrigenomics and society (ie, the reciprocal stimulation of both developments), I analyzed chances for a fruitful match between normative concepts and strategies of both developments. Nutrigenomics embodies =3 normative concepts. First, food is exclusively interpreted in terms of disease prevention. Second, striving for health is interpreted as the quantification of risks and prevention of diseases through positive food-gene interactions. The third normative idea is that disease prevention by the minimization of risks is an individual's task. My thesis was that these concepts of nutrigenomics would not easily match with concepts of food and health of various food styles in Western societies, which, for instance, parents in the case of metabolic programming endorse and with a philosophical view of the relation between food, health, and the meaning of life. Next, I reflected on the nonsynchronized coevolution of nutrigenomics and society because of this mismatch and introduced the concept of the fair representation of food styles in nutrigenomic developments. To synchronize and optimize the coevolution of nutrigenomics and society, I propose that the research policy of nutrigenomics should change to a research partnership with society on the basis of fair representation.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)2025S-2029S
JournalAmerican Journal of Clinical Nutrition
Issue number6
Publication statusPublished - 2011


  • life-style
  • food
  • health

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