Nutrition plays a critical role in every stage of life and supports health, wellness and improved quality of life. The Academy and its members work to improve health and reduce food insecurity for pregnant women, new mothers and their children, school children, and older Americans aging at home and in long term care facilities.
The Academy’s policy recommendations for lifecycle nutrition include:
Prenatal, Maternal and Infant Health
- Expand programs and services to reduce maternal and infant morbidity and mortality.
- Support the expansion of education and support for breast-feeding mothers to ensure infants have the best start to life.
- Support the Special Supplemental Nutrition Program for Women, Infants, and Children to continue to give all children a healthy start to life.
School Age Children
- Align school nutrition standards with the Dietary Guidelines for Americans and provide technical assistance and training to school nutrition professionals to meet the standards.
- Expand access to healthy food for all children through universal school meals during the school day.
- Expand access to healthy meals for children in need during the summer and outside of regular school hours.
- Support access to high-quality child care programs that include nutritious meals and snacks.
- Ensure that immigrant children and adolescents in the custody of any federal agency receive an adequate supply of healthful and safe foods that promote optimal physical, cognitive and social growth and development. Breast-fed infants should have continuing access to their mother's milk.
- Support farm to table programs to connect schools, communities and farmers.
Nutrition for Older Adults
- Support adequate funding for Older Americans Act programs that help to maintain the independence of our nation’s elderly.
- Expand evidence-based nutrition interventions and nutrition education in the Older Americans Act programs to ensure that food is paired with access to quality health care professionals.
- Advocate for malnutrition screening and treatment through better alignment of Medicare and Older Americans Act programs and services.