Doctor named 'nutrition trailblazer'

Dr. David L. Katz, director of the Yale-Griffin Prevention Research Center, was recently named one of the 100 Most Influential People in Health and Fitness by for the second year on a row.

Katz ranked 13th on this year’s list, on which he was called a “nutrition trailblazer.” Last year, he was ranked 19th.

Katz, a board-certified preventive medicine physician, is a recognized leader in nutrition, chronic disease prevention/health promotion, weight management and integrative medicine.

He has been named one of America’s Top Physicians in Preventive Medicine three times by the Consumer’s Research Council of America.

He is editor-in-chief of the journal Childhood Obesity, president-elect of the American College of Lifestyle Medicine, founder and president of the nonprofit Turn the Tide Foundation, and medical director for the Integrative Medicine Center at Griffin Hospital.

He is the principal inventor of the NuVal Nutritional Scoring System used in supermarkets across the country, which scores foods on a scale from 1-100 based on nutritional value to help consumers make healthier purchases.

In the community

Katz is the founding director of the Yale-Griffin Prevention Research Center, which is affiliated with Yale University’s School of Public Health.

For the past 15 years, he has overseen a team that conducts a mix of community-based and clinical research. His team is currently searching for the minimal dose of cocoa that can provide “heart-healthy” benefits, studying the health effects of walnuts on people with diabetes and the health effects of eggs on people at-risk for diabetes, and comparing snacks for their effects on satiety.

They are partnering with two universities on a study — funded by the National Institutes of Health — to investigate the impact of massage on people with osteoarthritis of the knee.

They are also partnering with four school districts in the Naugatuck Valley to promote health and prevent obesity among their students and families. In addition to providing nutrition and physical activity programs, they are helping school food service directors in two of the school districts to evaluate the impact of the NuVal system on students’ food selections in school cafeterias and vending machines.


Katz has authored or co-authored 15 books, including textbooks in nutrition and preventive medicine and a new book, Disease-Proof: The Remarkable Truth About What Makes Us Well. He also has published nearly 200 scientific articles and textbook chapters and nearly 1,000 newspaper articles., an online health and fitness source, selects innovators who revolutionize the way others think about health and wellness. This year’s list includes Dr. Oz, First Lady Michelle Obama, CNN Chief Medical Correspondent Dr. Sanjay Gupta, chef Jamie Oliver, food journalist Mark Bittman, food policy expert Dr. Marion Nestle, food writer Michael Pollan, and natural health educator Dr. Andrew Weil.