Current State of the Art in Medical Foods

Speaker: S.Blum Presented at: 79th NNI Workshop, New York


Inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) is an immune mediated, chronic intestinal condition which follows a course punctuated by relapses and remissions. The etiology of IBD is multifactorial and comprises genetic susceptibility and uncontrolled immune responses. Environmental factors, including microbiota, diet and smoking, play a role in the pathogenesis and disease course of IBD.  Typically, IBD patients need lifelong medication. In addition, the role of nutrition in the management of IBD is increasingly recognized. This presentation highlights data supporting the role of targeted nutritional interventions in the therapeutic plan of IBD patients. Medical foods are dietary foods which are medically formulated to be administered enterally, under the supervision of physicians for specific nutritional interventions related to the patients’ clinical condition. The presentation examines the implications of the development of medical food products and associated proof-of-efficacy requirements. In addition, he also discusses the current need to establish a molecular basis of distinct nutritional needs in patients with IBD.