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Italy -Annual Report


The Italian Nutrition Society (SINU) is a non-profit scientific organisation founded in 1963 by a group of researchers and experts on physiology and nutrition sciences. Ever since, the society has brought together the expertise in human nutrition existing in different academic sectors. This has been aimed at gaining better insight into the emerging problems of nutrition research, and at disseminating correct information on nutrition in the population.
SINU has been active in:

  • Organising scientific meetings at both national and international level;
  • Encouraging the public intervention in supporting human nutrition research;
  • Supporting initiatives of nutrition information of the population;
  • Creating ad hoc working groups to achieve consensus on emerging scientific topics.

The website of the Society, an always useful tool of dissemination, is continuously updated and reviewed. SINU is extremely active in the field of education, being a provider for organisation of events to assure adequate training in nutrition and food topics.

List of Council members and their institutions

Position  Name  Affiliation
 President  Giovannangelo Oriani, MD  Faculty of Sport Sciences, University of Molise
 Vice-president  Marisa Porrini, Ph.D.  Department of Food Science and Microbiology, University of Milan
 Secretary  Luca Scalfi, MD  Department of Food Science, University of Naples
Treasurer  Andrea Ghiselli, MD  National Institute for Research on Food and Nutrition, Rome
 Members  Carlo Agostoni, MD  Department of Paediatrics – University of Milan
 Alessandra Bordoni, Ph.D.  Department of Biochemistry – University of Bologna
 Paolo De Cristofaro, MD  Regional Centre for Nutrition, Abruzzo
 Paola Porcella, Ph.D  Department of Applied Sciences – University of Cagliari
 Laura Rossi, Ph.D  National Institute for Research on Food and Nutrition, Rome

Contact information for IUNS matter 
Laura Rossi, Ph.D.
National Institute for Research on Food and Nutrition
Human Nutrition Unit
Via Ardeatina, 546
00178 Roma, Italy
Ph: +39 06 51494522
Fax: +39 06 51494550

Term of council

The term of the Council Members is three calendar years. The council members cannot serve for more than two consecutive terms. The board met 8 times during 2004 in order guarantee an adequate management of the Society.


Year established

Regular members: 841
Group members: 15


  • National Congresses Organized every 2 years (pair).
  • National Meetings on specific topics organized every 2 years (odds).
  • Working groups: Food Science, Nutrition Physical Activity and Sport, Evaluation of Nutritional Status, Nutritional Education, Clinical Nutrition.
  • Six regional groups.
  • Participation to the Network of Folic Acid utilisation for tube neural defects prevention.
  • Participation to activities of Association to Fight Thrombosis
  • Participation to activities of European Heart Network

National and international contacts
At national level, SINU is part of the Federation of Italian Nutrition Societies (FeSIN), of the Federation of Italian Biology Societies (FISBi) and of the Federation of Scientific Medicine Societies (FISM). Great attention has been dedicated to the relationship with international organisations with similar aims. SINU is affiliated to the International Union of Nutrition Sciences (IUNS) and is the Italian member of the Federation of European Nutrition Societies (FENS) and collaborates with the activities of the European Academy of Nutritional Sciences (EANS). The present FENS president, dr. Francesco Branca, was the former SINU secretary.

Recent publications:

  • Since 1977 SINU has co-ordinated the formulation of Italian Recommended Daily Allowances for energy and nutrients (LARN). LARN are an important means to evaluate risks of nutrient unbalance in the population, to plan food policy at national level and to transfer nutrition knowledge. LARN have been constantly updated by a continuous research activity and have been revised in 1986 and in 1996.
  • Obesity prevention in Italy: methodological suggestions for realisation of nutritional interventions. SINU, 2003.
  • The Italian Working Group on Nutrition and Stroke Prevention (2004). Nutritional Recommendations for the Prevention of Ischemic Stroke. Nutrition, Metabolism and Cardiovascular Diseases (NMCD) 14(2): 115-120.
  • Newsletter of the Nutrition Society (every two months).


Meetings and congresses (2002-2004)

  • Nutrition: from recommendations to practice – Salsomaggiore Terme – 2002
  • New evidences on food behaviour – Pavia – 2003
  • 9° European Nutrition Conference – Roma – 2003
  • Post-graduation course in nutrition and well-being – Milano – 2003
  • Regional Meeting: Evidences and false myths in human nutrition – Napoli- 2004
  • Nutrition and quality of life in elderly – Milano- 2004
  • Updating of current knowledge in nutrition – Firenze – 2004

Training courses
A series of training courses on food and nutrition topics has been conducted by SINU as the advanced education for nutrition professionals since 1980s.

The 9th European Nutrition Conference
The organisation of the 9th European Nutrition Conference has started in 1999 when the Italian Human Nutrition Society (SINU) was appointed by the General Assembly of FENS to host the conference. The European Academy of Nutritional Sciences (EANS), which is an association of individual scientists based all over Europe, has also decided to convene its associates in occasion of the periodic FENS conferences. Hence, this conference has become an event attended by a large number of European scientists involved in the fields of nutrition and food production. SINU has set up a special organisation to prepare the conference. It is usually the responsibility of the host country to make all arrangements – definition of the programme, finance  and logistics. SINU made an effort to place itself in a position of leadership of the initiative, but trying to create an opportunity for as many as possible viewpoints to be expressed. Hence, scientists from different countries and different disciplines have been asked to give their contribution to the project. This has been achieved by having a central management and by organising structures of open consultation in which advise is provided.

The main income of SINU is the members’ fee. Contribution for specific activities was sporadically part of SINU budget: for example for the organisation of the 9th European Nutrition Conference a contribution from the European Commission 5th Framework programme was received.