Medical Self-Care: Dr. Marion Nestle on Your Doctor and Nutrition

Medical Self-Care: A conversation with Dr. Marion Nestle, medical doctor and contributing editor to the Medical Self-Care column. Dr. Nestle discusses what you need to know about your doctor and nutrition.

| November/December 1982

A conversation with Dr. Marion Nestle who talks about the subject of your doctor and nutrition. 

This issue's column is an edited version of a conversation I had with Marion Nestle, an associate dean and lecturer in medicine and biochemistry at the University of California School of Medicine in San Francisco, on what you need to know about your doctor and nutrition. Dr. Nestle teaches nutrition to health science students, as well as to resident physicians, and she coordinates nutrition education within the School of Medicine. A Ph.D. in molecular biology from the University of California at Berkeley, Dr. Nestle is also a contributing editor of Medical Self-Care. 

Many people say that medical schools generally ignore the area of nutrition science. Do you agree?  

Yes . . . and even when the subject is included in a curriculum, the classes tend to be inadequate.


Well, first of all, many people who teach biochemistry, physiology, or other "hard" sciences are a bit contemptuous of nutrition . . . they don't consider it a real science. After all, because of the field's relative newness, nutrition researchers don't have the huge body of well-controlled corroborating data that most other sciences can call upon . . . so it's often difficult to make a convincing scientific argument for the importance of diet in medicine.

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