Evidence-based nutrition (EBN) has gained currency as part of the growing role of evidence-based medicine (EBM) to increase the validity, utility and cost-effectiveness of both clinical practice and, increasingly, public health endeavours. Nutritionally-related disorders and diseases (NRD) account for a relatively large proportion of the burden of ill-health, disease and mortality, especially as the nexus between them and both infectious disease and so-called chronic disease is understood. As resource allocation is increasingly dependent on the evidence for preventive or therapeutic effect, the case for nutrition interventions also needs to be underpinned by evidence. However, feeding studies are not as amenable to the designs familiar to clinical trialists and dietary interventions in public health may be complex in their conduct and interpretation, making other approaches like cohort studies more attractive even if costly and long in the execution. With a number of food system changes in rapid progress or imminent, especially in the populous Asia Pacific region, along with changing demographics, changing disease patterns and concern about present and future food security, a stock-take and scenario analysis of EBN was undertaken by a panel of nutrition scientists, population scientists, agriculturalists, clinicians and policy makers together with consumer and indigenous stake-holders in Taiwan in 2007. They found that clinical practice guidelines and proposals for health and nutrition policies required greater emphasis and expertise in EBN.