The report, from the July 2016 Toxicology Forum (Tox Forum) Meeting held in Salt Lake City, UT, advises that evaluation of safety/toxicity is one key component in establishing dietary guidance, and adds to the case made in a 2016 European Journal of Nutrition article that calls on authoritative scientific bodies to set standards for bioactive nutrients, “Nutrient reference value: non-communicable disease endpoints—a conference report.”
James C. Griffiths, PhD, vice president, scientific & international affairs, for the Council for Responsible Nutrition (CRN), chaired the Tox Forum session on this topic and co-authored both papers. Dr. Griffiths observed, “CRN and other key stakeholders that are attuned to the growing interest in bioactive nutrients are engaging in discourse over whether, and if so, how, dietary guidance or recommended intakes might be established for these substances. Safety evaluation is a key consideration in developing recommendations and our Tox Forum proceedings reviewed current and past approaches featuring case studies including lutein and green tea extracts.”
In addition, previously published papers co-authored by Dr. Griffiths looked at bioactives including the omega-3 fatty acids, eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA) and docosahexaenoic acid (DHA), flavanols, lycopene, zeaxanthin, and soybean isoflavones.
Among the possible approaches to establishing the safety of bioactives are those used to establish upper intake levels for essential nutrients, the Dietary Reference Intake (DRI) Upper Level (UL) model, as well as identification of the “no observed adverse effect level” (NOAEL) or “lowest observed adverse effect level” (LOAEL), the paper explained. However, the extent of available data regarding intakes of bioactive components and documented adverse effects, and available estimates of typical dietary intakes of the substances in the population must be considered. “Toxicologists need to be involved in both the development of the safety framework and in the evaluation of the science to establish maximum intake/upper limits,” Dr. Griffiths noted.
The conference report “Bioactive nutrients—Time for tolerable upper intake levels to address safety,” published in Regulatory Toxicology and Pharmacology, was authored by: Allison A. Yates, PhD, consultant to the Institute of Medicine Food and Nutrition Board; John W. Erdman Jr., PhD, of the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign; Andrew Shao, PhD, of Herbalife Nutrition, Ltd.: Laurie C. Dolan, PhD, of Burdock Group; and Dr. Griffiths.