Ruth MacDonald

Independent Expert

Ruth MacDonald

Professor and Chair, Food Science and Human Nutrition, Assistant Dean of Graduate Programs, College of Agriculture and Life Sciences, Iowa State University

Ruth MacDonald is currently the Chair and Professor of the Department of Food Science and Human Nutrition at Iowa State University since 2004. She received her Ph.D. in Nutrition and Food Science from University of Minnesota, and since then, she has written multiple publications about the relationship between soy components and botanicals and breast, prostate, and colon cancer progression.

For the 17 years before her position at Iowa State, she served on the faculty at University of Missouri in the Departments of Food Science and Nutritional Sciences. She was a member of the Food for the 21st Century Nutrition Cluster, and she serves on the editorial board of the Journal of Nutrition, The Korean Journal of Nutrition, been on grant review panels for the US Army Breast Cancer Program, US Department of Agriculture, National Institutes of Health and other funding groups. Additionally, she is a member of the American Association for Nutritional Sciences, American Association for Cancer Research, Sigma Xi, and the Institute for Food Technologists.

From this Expert

Posted on: March 8, 2018
Response from Ruth MacDonald, Professor and Chair, Food Science and Human Nutrition, Assistant Dean of Graduate Programs, College of Agriculture and Life Sciences, Iowa State University • April 30, 2018
There has never been a confirmed case of an allergic response to a GMO food. The FDA requires that any GMO trait must be shown to be non-allergenic before it can be released to the food system. People may have an allergic reaction to a food, such as soybean or corn. But these responses are due to natural proteins in these foods, not the genetic trait. 
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Posted on: June 28, 2017
Response from Ruth MacDonald, Professor and Chair, Food Science and Human Nutrition, Assistant Dean of Graduate Programs, College of Agriculture and Life Sciences, Iowa State University • September 6, 2017
Monosodium glutamate is mainly produced by a fermentation process with sugar as a starting material. It is not GMO. Plants that have been genetically modified do not contain any animal residue or byproducts.
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Posted on: August 27, 2015
Response from Ruth MacDonald, Professor and Chair, Food Science and Human Nutrition, Assistant Dean of Graduate Programs, College of Agriculture and Life Sciences, Iowa State University • October 2, 2015
Obesity is a major health concern for the U.S. but also in many countries around the world. There are many factors that may have influenced the rapid rise in obesity observed over the past 50 years. Among these are more sedentary and stressful lifestyles, larger portion sizes and more access to fast food. Also, higher consumption of sweetened beverages, especially by children and young adults, has been reported. All of these factors create an imbalance of energy leading to more calories... Read More
Posted on: June 30, 2015
Response from Ruth MacDonald, Professor and Chair, Food Science and Human Nutrition, Assistant Dean of Graduate Programs, College of Agriculture and Life Sciences, Iowa State University • July 10, 2015
The answer to this question is, “no.” DNA is present in all fruits and vegetables, meat, milk and eggs. The molecular structure of DNA is actually pretty simple; it is made up of nucleic acids linked with bonds to create the double helix we are so familiar with seeing. When in that structure DNA is able to transfer information about how to build proteins, DNA is transcribed by RNA and then RNA translates the code to put amino acids together to form proteins.   When DNA is... Read More
Posted on: March 5, 2015
Response from Ruth MacDonald, Professor and Chair, Food Science and Human Nutrition, Assistant Dean of Graduate Programs, College of Agriculture and Life Sciences, Iowa State University • March 13, 2015
The primary type of ‘reaction’ that would occur in response to a chemical consumed in food would be an allergic reaction. There has never been any documented allergic reaction associated with the consumption of a GMO-derived food that is currently available in the US food system. The FDA requires that any new GMO product be tested to ensure there are no potential negative effects due to the proteins expressed by the inserted DNA. Humans and animals have been consuming GMO derived... Read More
No Studies were Found.