At the Institute for the Advancement of Food and Nutrition Sciences research serves as the foundation for our actions. See our current grant opportunities below.

Current Opportunities:

Scientific integrity is a core value of IAFNS. Learn how we embed scientific integrity into every step of our research process.

Projects Funded by IAFNS:

IAFNS's mission is to advance food safety and nutrition science for the benefit of public health. View projects funded by IAFNS below, and learn how we embed scientific integrity into every step of our research process.

Understanding the Opportunities and Challenges to Sodium Reduction in Food Service and Key Strategies to Foster Progress

The objective of this project is to document the outcomes of a dialogue with leaders from the food service sector, government, and academia to understand the challenges and opportunities related to sodium reduction in the food service sector. This work related to the dynamics, initiatives, and challenges in the food service sector will help identify […]

Reconciliation of Differences between Observational Studies and Randomized Controlled Trials: A Case Study on Low Calorie Sweeteners

Scientific evidence is commonly categorized into levels based on quality of evidence, commonly referred to as the hierarchy of evidence. The complexity of evaluating study quality based on study design becomes problematic for dietary exposures and health outcomes with conflicting evidence observed in observational studies and RCTs. Such conflicting evidence is well documented for low […]

Understanding Authoritative Decisions Around Selection and Validation of Cognitive Performance Measures – with a Focus on Nutrition-Related Research

The objective of this project is to document the outcomes of an expert roundtable with the goal to understand decisions and approaches that underlie cognitive assessment tool selection by authoritative groups. This effort aims to enable the advancement of evidence evaluation and evidence development to support future dietary guidance, and to document learnings and how […]

Framework for Defining Suitable Recycled Resin Based on Intended End-Use and Characterizing Potential Chemicals of Concern

Changes in consumer behavior and growth in convenience foods, cosmetics, and pharmaceutical products complicates the use of recycled materials by requiring sophisticated and complex multilayer packaging solutions and increasing the amount of packaging waste. Many packaging materials, such as multilayer flexible and rigid plastics, are primarily sent to landfills. This project will develop a common […]

Development of a Human Whole-Stool Reference Material – NIST Collaboration

Over the past 10+ years, it has become evident that the human gut microbiome plays a critical role in a vast and disparate set of health and disease states; including diabetes, obesity, cancer and depression. To identify new biomarkers that may serve as disease indicators and to understand biologically‐relevant properties of the human gut microbiome, […]

Translation of Consumer-Articulated Cognitive Benefits to Validated Research Tools

The degree to which the outcomes measured by cognitive performance tests are aligned with outcomes of interest to consumers has not been documented. Consumer needs are expressed through specific terms that are meaningful to them. For example, terms commonly used by consumers in the cognitive health space are mood, focus, sharpness, and mental clarity, among […]

Protein Quality Measurement Approach in North America

Protein quality has not been an issue in North America populations in the recent past due to the quantity and quality of protein consumed. However, as food sources shift, quality of protein may become a more important consumer decision factor in their individual choice of foods. This proposed in vitro protein digestibility method will provide […]

Guiding Principles for Funding Food Science and Nutrition Research

With the limited availability of funds from federal agencies, nongovernmental sources of funding – including industry – play a critical role in offering new opportunities for advancement and innovation in food and nutrition research. While bias can present itself in a multitude of ways, with no person, entity, or sector free from its grasp, these […]

Comparison of Food Category Contributors to Sodium Intake from Stores vs. Restaurants

The FDA released the final voluntary sodium reduction guidance in 2021. The targets presented are applicable to both consumer packaged goods and prepared/restaurant foods. Research indicates that the sodium contribution of restaurant foods is greater than that of foods consumed at home, including processed foods. There is an opportunity to understand these contributions, in totality […]

Heavy Metals in US Foods: Exposure Assessment by Age Group and Mitigation Strategies

Heavy metals such as arsenic (As), cadmium (Cd), lead (Pb), and mercury (Hg) have the potential to cause neurocognitive impairment to infants and young children who are exposed to them in their diets. These elements can also cause chronic toxicological effects in older children and adults. To help address these risks it is important to […]

A Framework for Heavy Metal Prioritization and Mitigation for Reducing Metal Intake: Rice and Spinach Case Studies

Rice is a significant source of arsenic and other elemental toxins (e.g. mercury and cadmium) to the human diet, particularly in foods for babies and young children. Spinach is a significant source of the highly toxic metals Cd and Pb as well as other chemicals with negative health implications (e.g., organics, perchlorate), but the processes […]

The Scientific Basis of Communicating Carbohydrate Quality

A workshop was convened jointly with Diabetes Canada to advance the dialogue between scientists and regulatory experts on science-based indices that can be used in communicating physiologic effects of carbohydrates in foods. Experts agreed that the carbohydrate quality of a food would take into account multiple factors, including whole food credentials, the glycemic response to […]