The first Scandinavian Conference on Critical Dietetics


The first Scandinavian Conference on Critical Dietetics has been successfully conducted in Uppsala 25th August 2017

Welcome to join the critical dietetics network! That was the main message conveyed by the international speakers at the first Scandinavian conference on critical dietetics, arranged by the department of Food, Nutrition and Dietetics at Uppsala University. 78 practitioners and researchers from Sweden and the Nordic countries attended the conference. Catherine Morley from Acadia University in Canada and John Coveney from Flinders University in Australia was invited to speak about the concept of critical dietetics and how a critical perspective can be added to the traditional dietetics practices to better understand people´s everyday life. They shared that the critical perspective is reflexive and questions basic assumptions that we unconsciously make.

Elin Lövestam and Nicklas Neuman from Uppsala University gave the attendees a short background to critical theories as well as a Scandinavian perspective of Critical Dietetics. In the afternoon there were four presentations on research which acknowledged the importance of context when studying eating habits.
Paulina Nowicka from Uppsala University presented results concerning sociocultural perspectives on childhood obesity and eating from “the Grandparents study”. Jukka Gronow from Helsinki University held his talk on the provocative title of “Does information change behavior?”. He concluded that changes apparently happen in the society, but to what extent this is a consequence of purposeful action or policy measures, or more general socioeconomic and cultural changes is very hard to say. Karin Eli from Oxford University presented results from a study focusing on media representations of the body as framed in the tv-show “Supersized vs. Superskinny”.
The last presenter was Ata Ghaderi, from Karolinska Institutet who talked about how we can understand eating from a psychological perspective. He confirmed that eating is a behavior in context and we must acknowledge that humans are creatures of habits more than rational decision makers.

A closing panel discussion with all the speakers ended the conference. The discussion was led by Christina Fjellström who had been moderating the whole program. The need of critical dietetics in Scandinavia as well as the need of networking around these questions were acknowledged during the discussion and there is a Nordic critical dietetic network just starting up. Are you interested to join, contact Elin Lövestam at the department for Food Nutrition and Dietetics, Uppsala University: and join the facebook group ”Nordic Network for Critical Dietetics”