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Instructions to authors

  1. Scope and audience
  2. Mission and history
  3. Article types
  4. Terms of consideration
  5. Authorship and originality
  6. Funding and sponsorship
  7. Competing interests
  8. Manuscript preparation
  9. Procedures

Scope and audience

Nutrition Reviews is a highly cited, monthly, international, peer-reviewed journal that specializes in the publication of authoritative and critical literature reviews on current and emerging topics in nutrition science, food science, clinical nutrition, and nutrition policy. Readers of Nutrition Reviews include nutrition scientists, biomedical researchers, clinical and dietetic practitioners, and advanced students of nutrition.

Articles selected for publication will be consistent with the journal’s mission and should clearly outline both the biological and practical nutritional implications of a timely topic, so the reader obtains a clear understanding of both the topic’s nature and its relevance. The journal does not publish primary research. Systematic reviews (with or without meta-analysis) are eligible for consideration, provided they are prepared in accordance with established guidelines. Unsolicited submissions written in English are welcome from all countries.

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Mission and history

Nutrition Reviews was founded in 1942 in response to a recognized need for expert analysis and synthesis of the vast amounts of nutrition science research being generated worldwide. Today, that need is greater still and Nutrition Reviews continues to serve it with the same goal in mind: To help nutrition scientists, scholars, practitioners, and policy makers stay abreast of significant developments in the field through concise reports prepared with objectivity and a critical focus.

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Article types

Nutrition Reviews publishes review articles in both the narrative and systematic review formats. Systematic reviews must address a clearly defined research question that is articulated in the abstract; they must also follow recognized approaches to the literature selection, analysis, and conclusions, as outlined in accepted guidelines, such as PRISMA or MOOSE. Scoping reviews that investigate the available literature on a topic in order to determine if more research is required, or if there is sufficient available literature for a full review, fall outside of the journal's scope and are not considered for publication. Submissions in the following article categories are welcome:

  • Lead Article: Comprehensive review of a broad topic;
  • Special Article: Comprehensive review focused on a niche topic, a specific aspect of a broad topic, or new methods in nutrition science;
  • Nutrition in Clinical Care: Presentation of clinically relevant brief reviews of evidence-based information and tools to facilitate translation into clinical practice; 
  • Emerging Science: Discussion of an important current study or group of studies in nutrition research presented in the context of the larger body of research on that topic;
  • Nutrition Science ↔ Policy: Review of the interaction between scientific research and national and international health and nutrition policy;
  • Letter to the Editor: Addition to the discourse regarding certain topics covered in recent issues of the journal.

Systematic reviews may be submitted for any category except Emerging Science and Letter to the Editor. Articles in the categories of Lead Article, Special Article, Nutrition in Clinical Care, Emerging Science, and Nutrition Science ↔ Policy are subject to peer review. Letters to the Editor are published at the discretion of the editors. 

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Terms of consideration

All manuscripts submitted to the journal must be original works of authorship that are not under simultaneous consideration elsewhere and do not infringe the intellectual property rights of any individual or organization. All previously published information, whether by the authors themselves or other individuals, groups, or entities, must be appropriately cited. The final version must have been read and approved by all of the individuals named as authors. The work must present novel information that differs substantially from that presented in works published by the authors previously. Authors should attest to these terms in their cover letter.

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Authorship and originality

To qualify for authorship, individuals must meet all of the following criteria: 1) contributed significantly to the work’s conception, design, data collection (as applicable), or data interpretation and analysis; 2) participated in the writing or critical revision of the article in a manner sufficient to establish ownership of the intellectual content; and 3) read and approved the version of the manuscript being submitted. All authors share responsibility for ensuring the manuscript complies with the journal’s style requirements and terms of consideration.  Any requests for changes to author names, or order of appearance, that are received post submission will need to be approved in writing by all authors.

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Funding and sponsorship

All sources of funding for the article’s research, preparation, and publication should be noted in the article’s Acknowledgments section under the subheading “Funding” and be acknowledged in the cover letter. The full name of the funding agency should be provided and grant numbers should be supplied. If grants or other funding were given to specific authors, the relevant individuals should be identified by their initials in parentheses.

The role any sponsor played in the study design, data collection and analysis, manuscript preparation and revision, and publication decisions should be made clear in the Funding declaration in the Acknowledgments section. Authors should also indicate whether they received complete access to data pertaining to the publication that was owned by the sponsor.

Crossref Funding Data Registry

In order to meet your funding requirements authors are required to name their funding sources, or state if there are none, during the submission process. For further information on this process or to find out more about the CHORUS initiative please click here.

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Competing interests

All authors are required to disclose relevant competing interests by noting them in the Acknowledgments section of the manuscript under the subheading "Declaration of Interest." Guidelines regarding what constitutes a competing interest are included in the Declaration of Interest form. Completed Declaration of Interest forms for each author should be uploaded as

Supporting Information at the time of manuscript submission.

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Manuscript preparation

Cover letter. The cover letter should address the following topics: description of the work and its novelty; authorship; and originality. The description of the work should clearly indicate what novel contribution the submitted article makes to the existing literature. A statement should indicate that all listed authors meet the criteria for authorship (see Authorship and Originality entry above) and that no individual meeting these criteria has been omitted. Regarding originality, the following should be declared or, if untrue, explained: 1) the submitted article represents the original work of the authors; 2) the article is not currently under consideration elsewhere, nor has it been previously published in the same or substantially similar form; and 3) no copyright to any other work was breached in the manuscript’s creation.

Manuscript format. Manuscripts should be prepared electronically using word-processing software, preferably Microsoft Word. Article pages should be formatted as double-spaced and left-justified text with 1-inch margins and 12-point type. Pages and lines must be numbered.

Length restrictions. Articles in any category must be formatted as indicated in the Manuscript format guidelines section and may not exceed 50 double-spaced pages in length, including references and illustrative material. Each article should provide a focused, concise, and objective investigation of a clearly defined topic.

Supporting information. The option to publish certain material as “Supporting Information” in an online-only format is provided. Authors are encouraged to make use of this option to accommodate material that may be of interest to the reader but is not integral to the work itself. Examples would include extensive summary tables and appendices. It is particularly important that the main text of an article include everything essential for a complete understanding of the review and that the main text stand alone from the Supporting Information. Readers should not need to toggle between documents to obtain or understand information. If references are included in Supporting Information documents, they should be listed at the end of each document and appear in a numerical sequence pertaining solely to that document.

Cover page. The following information should be included on the cover page:

  • Article type. Choose one of the article types in which the journal specializes. Editors may change this designation if they find the article is better suited to another category.
  • Title. The title of the article should be short (200 characters or less), specific, and accurately describe the topic of the work. Abbreviations and acronyms should not be used unless they are widely recognized and generally understood, e.g. HIV, DNA. Articles and phrases such as “the use of,” “the treatment of,” and “a report of” should be avoided.
  • Author names. Please list the first name, middle initial(s), and last name of each author in descending order of their contributions to the article. Individuals who provided technical or administrative support should be recognized in the Acknowledgments section.
  • Author affiliations. The names of all authors affiliated with a particular institution should be listed directly above the affiliation. Each affiliation should include the department, institution, city, state (spelled out, if applicable), and country.
  • Corresponding author. The name, complete mailing address, telephone and e-mail address should be provided for the author responsible for correspondence.
  • Abstract. An abstract clearly outlining the topic and primary objective of the review, methods of data sourcing and extraction, data synthesis (as applicable), and conclusions must be included with each article. The length should not exceed 170 words for Lead, Special, and Nutrition Science ↔ Policy papers or 125 words for Emerging Science and Nutrition in Clinical Care papers. Abstracts exceeding these word limits will be shortened during copyediting. References, tables, and figures should not be cited in the abstract.
  • Key words. At least three to five key words or phrases should be provided.

Sections and headings

Narrative reviews. Each manuscript should contain the following sections in addition to the abstract:

  • Introduction (directly following the abstract)
  • Conclusion (at the end of the text)
  • Acknowledgements (after the Conclusion)
  • Funding and sponsorship (as part of the Acknowledgments)
  • Declaration of interest (as part of the Acknowledgments)
  • References (after the Acknowledgments).

Between the Introduction and Conclusion, headings and subheadings are at the discretion of the author. They should be used to organize the text and guide the reader.

Systematic reviews. Articles of this type should be prepared in accordance with relevant, existing guidelines (e.g., PRISMA, MOOSE) and be structured accordingly. If the guidelines used include a checklist, the completed checklist should be uploaded as Supporting Information during the manuscript submission process. Questions regarding the acceptability of chosen guidelines can be sent to the journal’s editorial office via e-mail (nutritionreviews@ilsi.org).

Abbreviations and acronyms. Abbreviations and acronyms should not be used unless they are widely recognized and generally understood, e.g. BMI, FDA. These should only be used for terms used more than four times in the text. If that criterion is met, the term should be spelled out on first use followed by the abbreviation or acronym in parentheses. The abbreviated form should be used consistently thereafter, except in section headings, where it should continue to be spelled out.

References. The number of references cited should be tailored to the material being reviewed and be from reputable sources. As a general rule, articles in the Lead, Special, and Nutrition Science ↔ Policy categories do not typically include more than 200 references, while articles in the Emerging Science and Nutrition in Clinical Care categories do not typically have more than 120.

References should be numbered sequentially upon first appearance in text, tables, and figures. They should be typed as superscripts and placed after commas and periods but before colons and semicolons. When citing a series of consecutive numbers, provide the first and last with a dash between them (e.g., 5–7). When referring to a group of authors in the text, the format “Smith et al.23” should be used.

References cited only in figure or table legends should be numbered according to the first mention of the graphic in the text and should be cited in the text at that point. Reference to unpublished work or personal communications should be avoided but, when essential, should be identified in the text as “unpublished data” or “personal communication from …”, not in the reference list. To ensure long-term accessibility, internet citations should only be used if that is the sole source of the information.

The reference list should be formatted according to AMA style. For each citation, sufficient information must be provided to allow a reader to know in what medium the material appeared and to access the information. Please list all authors if there are six or fewer; for seven or more authors, list the first three followed by “et al.” Examples of AMA style are as follows:

Journal article: Gordon KB, Papp KA, Hamilton TK, et al, for the Efalizumab Study Group. Efalizumab for patients with moderate to severe plaque psoriasis: a randomized controlled trial. JAMA. 2003;290:3073–3080.

Chapter in a book: Dybul M, Connors M, Fauci AS. Immunology of HIV infection. In: Paul WE, ed. Fundamental Immunology. 5th ed. Philadelphia, Pa: Lippincott Williams & Wilkins; 2003:1285–1318.

Entire book: Gibson GR, Rastall RA. Prebiotics: Developments and Application. Hoboken, NJ: Wiley; 2006.

Government bulletin: Guidance on Labeling of Foods That Need Refrigeration by Consumers. College Park, MD: Office of Food Labeling, US Food and Drug Administration; 1997. Docket No. 96D-0513.

Internet citation: American College of Surgeons. National Trauma Data Bank Report 2006, Version 6.0. Chicago, USA. Available at: http://www.facs.org/trauma/ntdb/ntdbannualreport2006.pdf. Accessed on October 22, 2007.

More detailed guidance on Internet citations is provided in the recommendations of the Library of Medicine.

Tables and illustrations. Tables and illustrations should be numbered in the sequence in which they appear in the text. They should appear in sequence after the reference list.

Tables. All tables should be included in the text file after the reference list. Each table should be constructed using the table functions of the word-processing program being used. A title should appear at the top of each table. A column heading should appear in the top cell of each column. Within the table, each data set should appear in a single cell; the return key should not be used within any cell. Text should be justified to the left. Numerical data should be justified to the decimal point. Capitalization should be restricted to the first letter of the legend, the first letter in each cell, and applicable abbreviations or acronyms. Abbreviations used in the table should be spelled out in a footnote. When citing prior studies in tables please use the following format: Smith et al. (1998)21.

Illustrations. All artwork should be submitted in digital format in separate files saved using the following convention: surname of first author_figure number (e.g., Smith_figure 1). Figure legends should be cited in the manuscript after the reference list but should not appear in the figures themselves. Charts and graphs downloaded from the Internet are not acceptable. Line artwork (vector graphics) should be saved in Encapsulated PostScript (EPS) format and bitmap files (halftones or photographic images) in Tagged Image Format (TIFF), with a resolution of at least 300 dpi at final size. Do not send native file formats. More detailed guidance for submitting electronic artwork can be found at the Author Resource Centre. A free tool for converting files to other formats can be located at the Zamar website.

Color illustrations. Artwork submitted in color is reproduced in color online at no cost. If color reproduction is desired in the print version of the journal, a contribution of US $600 per figure is required.

Illustration permissions. If a table or figure is a reproduction or adaptation of a previously published work, written permission to reproduce or adapt the material must be obtained from the copyright holder prior to submission, and the source of the material must be cited either in a footnote to the table or in the figure legend. When requesting permission, rights to worldwide distribution in both print and electronic formats must be secured. The permissions grant must be included with the original submission. This requirement also applies to material published as Supporting Information. 

If you will be publishing your paper under an Open Access license but it contains material for which you do not have Open Access re-use permissions, please state this clearly by supplying the following credit line alongside the material:

Title of content

Author, Original publication, year of original publication, by permission of [rights holder]

Language Editing. Language editing, if your first language is not English, to ensure that the academic content of your paper is fully understood by journal editors and reviewers is optional. Language editing does not guarantee that your manuscript will be accepted for publication. For further information on this service, please click here. Several specialist language editing companies offer similar services and you can also use any of these. Authors are liable for all costs associated with such services.

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Manuscript processing

Manuscript submission. Manuscripts should be submitted online. There is no charge for submission. Full instructions and support are available on the site and a user ID and password can be obtained on the first visit. Support can be contacted by phone (+1-434-817-2040) by e-mail (ts.mcsupport@thomson.com) or online. If you cannot submit online, please contact the Editorial Office by e-mail (nutritionreviews@ilsi.org).

Use of iThenticate. Nutrition Reviews uses iThenticate software to determine the level of similarity between text in submitted articles and in articles published previously. Every manuscript received for consideration is run through this software directly following submission. Results are evaluated by the journal’s editors and included in deliberations about the manuscript’s suitability for publication.

Review process. Manuscripts are peer-reviewed promptly after submission, and are usually published within 10 months of acceptance. Authors may be asked to revise their manuscript to address any concerns raised during the review process. Authors may check the progress of their manuscript by logging in to the Manuscript Central site.

License to publish. Authors are required to complete an Author License form prior to publication of their work. The form will be provided to the corresponding author by the journal’s production editor shortly after manuscript acceptance.

Copyediting and proofs. Manuscripts accepted for publication are edited for clarity of content, consistency, and style prior to publication. Following copyediting and typesetting, formatted proofs are sent to the authors via e-mail for final approval. Authors should check the proofs promptly and carefully to answer any queries posed by the copyeditor and to ensure the text is complete and that all tables and figures are included and properly cited. Complete instructions are sent out with the proofs.

Author Copies and Offprints. Following publication, a free link to the published version of the article is provided to the corresponding author for distribution to coauthors and interested colleagues. This link permits free access with full online functionality without the need for a subscription. Authors may additionally order offprints at a 50% discount.  This offer only applies to offprints, created at the time of initial print publication. It does not apply to reprints, ordered post publication.

Ethics and misconduct

Nutrition Reviews is a member of the Committee on Publication Ethics and consults the guidelines of that organization as well as the International Committee of Medical Journal Editors, and the World Association of Medical Editors when handling allegations of misconduct.

All authors are obliged to ensure their manuscripts reflect the highest standards of scientific and ethical integrity. Evidence of possible scientific or ethical misconduct related to manuscripts submitted for review or published in Nutrition Reviews will be investigated for the purpose of determining the appropriate editorial course of action.

Open access

Authors who wish to make their article available to non-subscribers upon publication, or whose funding agency requires grantees to archive the final version of their article, may achieve these aims using Oxford Open. With Oxford Open, the author, the author's funding agency, or the author's institution pays a fee to ensure that the article is made available to non-subscribers upon publication on the Oxford Journals online platform, as well as deposited in the funding agency's preferred archive. For the full list of terms and conditions, see the Oxford Open web page.

Authors wishing to utilize Oxford Open will be required to complete an Oxford Open license and arrange payment of the applicable fee.

Prior to acceptance, authors are not required to inform the Editorial Office of their intent to publish the article using Oxford Open. All Oxford Open articles are treated in the same way as any other article. They go through the journal's standard peer-review process and will be accepted or rejected based on their own merit.

Oxford Open articles are published under Creative Commons licenses.

RCUK/Wellcome Trust funded authors publishing in Nutrition Reviews can use the Creative Common Attribution license (CC BY) for their articles.

All other authors can use the Creative Commons Attribution Non-Commercial No Derivatives license (CC BY-NC-ND).

More information about the Creative Commons licenses.

Open Access charges can be paid using the publisher's Author Services site. This will enable payment to be made online with a credit/debit card, or an invoice to be requested with delivery to occur by either email or post. The applicable open access charges vary according to which Creative Commons license is used. The open access charges are as follows.

Charges for CC BY

  • Regular charge: £2188/ $3400/ €2844
  • Reduced Rate Developing country charge*: £1094/ $1700 / €1422
  • Free Developing country charge*: £0 /$0 / €0 

Charges for CC BY-NC-ND:

  • Regular charge: £1875/ $3000/ €2438
  • Reduced Rate Developing country charge*: £938 / $1500 / €1219
  • Free Developing country charge*: £0 /$0 / €0

*Visit our developing countries page (click here for a list of qualifying countries). You can pay open access charges using our Author Services site. This will enable you to pay online with a credit/debit card, or request an invoice by email or post. Please note that these charges are in addition to any colour/page charges that may apply. Orders from the UK will be subject to the current UK VAT charge. For orders from the rest of the European Union, OUP will assume that the service is provided for business purposes. Please provide a VAT number for yourself or your institution, and ensure you account for your own local VAT correctly.

Post-production Corrections

No correction to a paper already published will be carried out without an erratum or corrigendum (as applicable), this applies to papers on Advance Access and published within an issue. This means that any change carried out to a paper already published online will have a corresponding erratum or corrigendum published with its own separate DOI. Whether on Advance Access or in an issue, if an erratum or corrigendum is published, the online version of the original paper will also be corrected online and the correction notice will mention this. Corrections will only be made if the publication record is seriously affected by the academic accuracy of published information.

Authors' corrections to Supplementary Data are made only in exceptional circumstances (for example major errors that compromise the conclusion of the study). Because the Supplementary Data is part of the original paper and hence the published record, the information cannot be updated if new data have become available or interpretations have changed.

A growing number of funding agencies stipulate that research articles they have funded must be published, licensed, and archived in compliance with specific requirements. Oxford Journals helps authors comply with these requirements. Information on how this is achieved is available here.

Note to NIH Grantees. Pursuant to NIH mandate, the accepted version of contributions authored by NIH grant-holders will be posted to PubMedCentral on the author’s behalf upon acceptance. This accepted version will be made publicly available 12 months after publication in an issue. Further information, and guidance on locating an article’s identification number, can be found here.

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