Adele Hite, PhD, MPH, RDN


The late Adele Hite, PhD, MPH, RD was a registered dietitian with a masters’ degree in public health nutrition and a PhD in rhetoric, communication, and digital media. She also had extensive graduate training in nutritional epidemiology.

Hite’s doctoral work in rhetoric, communication, and digital media centered on the historical, political, and sociocultural contexts surrounding the creation and evolution of the U.S. Dietary Guidelines for Americans. As many people are now learning, the first 1980 Dietary Guidelines were not based on a substantial body of scientific evidence. Hite’s dissertation explored the forces that helped to shape how and why the Dietary Guidelines define what a “healthy diet” is.

She began her work with low-carb diets in 2006 at the Duke Lifestyle Medicine Clinic, assisting Dr. Eric Westman in educating patients with obesity, and type 2 diabetes about how to make successful, sustainable changes in lifestyle, diet, and health.

Hite’s experience with patients at Duke inspired her to return to graduate school to learn more about why communication and beliefs about nutrition are the way they are.

Hite’s expertise and interest in nutrition, food, and public health covered a wide range of topics. She wrote articles in the areas of health science, food studies, and public health policy. She presented papers at national and international conferences for scholars and professionals from a variety of fields, including nutrition, rhetoric, dietetics, agriculture, and evolutionary health.

In conjunction with LowCarbUSA, Hite led a global effort to create a general protocol to guide health care professionals in using therapeutic carbohydrate reduction to treat metabolic disease. These are the first clinical guidelines for the prescription of therapeutic carbohydrate reduction written by and for the community of healthcare practitioners and researchers using this intervention. These guidelines have been translated into Spanish, German, and Portuguese, with French, Dutch, and Indonesian versions in progress.

Diet Doctor tributes to Adele Hite

Remembering Adele Hite, PhD, MPH, RD

In Memory of Adele Hite, PhD , a video tribute.

Select scholarly publications

Leroy, Frédéric, & Adele H. Hite. (2020). The Place of Meat in Dietary Policy: An Exploration of the Animal/Plant Divide. Meat and Muscle Biology 4(2), 1-11.

Leroy, Frédéric, Adele H. Hite & Pablo Gregorini. (2020). Livestock in evolving foodscapes and thoughtscapes. Frontiers in Sustainable Food Systems 4.

The Nutrire CoLab (Diana Burnett; Megan A. Carney; Lauren Carruth; Sarah Chard; Maggie Dickinson; Alyshia Gálvez; Hanna Garth; Jessica Hardin; Adele Hite; Heather Howard; Lenore Manderson; Emily Mendenhall; Abril Saldaña-Tejeda; Dana Simmons; Natali Valdez; Emily Vasquez; Megan Warin; Emily Yates-Doerr). (2020) Anthropologists respond to The Lancet EAT Commission. Letter to the editor. Bionatura 5(1).

Hite, Adele H. & Andrew Carter. (2019). Examining assumptions in science-based policy: Critical health communication, stasis theory, and public health nutrition guidance. Rhetoric of Health & Medicine 2(2), 147-175.

Hite, Adele H. (2018). Nutritional epidemiology of chronic disease and defining “healthy diet.” Global Food History 4(2), 207-225.

Hite, Adele H. & Sean Mark (2018). Jumping out of the nutrition system. Journal of Evolution and Health 2(3), article 5.

Hite, Adele H. (2017). Beyond ‘good nutrition’: The ethical implications of public health nutrition policy. In A.B. Hoflund, M. Pautz, & J. Jones (Eds.), The intersection of food and public health: Examining current challenges and solutions in policy and politics (pp. 181-198). New York, NY: Routledge

Hite, Adele H. (2017). The 2015 Dietary Guidelines for Americans: Irrelevant or alarming? Or both? Journal of Evolution and Health 2(1), article 14.

Cohen, Evan, Michael Cragg, Jehan deFonseka, Adele H. Hite, Melanie Rosenberg, & Bin Zhou. (2015). Statistical review of US macronutrient consumption data, 1965-2011: Americans have been following dietary guidelines, coincident with the rise in obesity. Nutrition 31(5), 727-732.

Hite, Adele H. & Pamela Schoenfeld. (2015). Open Letter to the Secretaries of the U.S. Departments of Agriculture and Health and Human Services on the creation of the 2015 Dietary Guidelines for Americans. Editorial. Nutrition 31(5), 776-9.

Broad, Garrett & Adele H. Hite. (2014). Nutrition troubles. Gastronomica 14(3), 5-16.

Hayes-Conroy, Jessica, Adele H. Hite, Kendra Klein, Charlotte Biltekoff, & Aya Kimura. (2014). Doing nutrition differently. Gastronomica 14(3), 56-66.

Hite, Adele H. (2013). Food frequency questionnaires: Small associations and large errors. Editorial. Nutrition 29(6), 925-6.

Hite, Adele H., Valerie G. Berkowitz & Keith Berkowitz. (2011). Low-carbohydrate diet review: Shifting the paradigm. Nutrition in Clinical Practice 26(3), 300-8.

Hite, Adele H. & Daisy Zamora. (2011). Low-carbohydrate diet scores and risk of type 2 diabetes in men. Letters to the editor. American Journal of Clinical Nutrition 94(2), 611.

Hite, Adele H. & Michael Meguid. (2011). Destined for greater obesity. Editorial. Nutrition 27(10), 1078-9.

Hite Adele H. (2011). Questioning population strategies to reduce sodium intake: What is the goal? Editorial. Nutrition 27(4), 390-1.

Hite Adele H. (2011). Is the science behind the 2010 Dietary Guidelines for Americans “unquestioned”? Editorial. Nutrition 27(4), 385-6.

Hite, Adele H., Richard D. Feinman, Gabriel Guzman, Morton Satin, Pamela A. Schoenfeld & Richard J. Wood. (2010). In the face of contradictory evidence: Report of the Dietary Guidelines for Americans Committee. Nutrition 26(10), 915-24.

Authored Book

Calihan, Jennifer & Adele H. Hite. (2018). Dinner Plans: Easy Vintage Meals. Pittsburgh, PA: Eat the Butter.

Public scholarship, invited talks, and media coverage

Hite, Adele. (2020, March 6) Panelist (with Garrett Broad, David Cassuto, Smita Narula. E. Melanie DuPuis, moderator), Consumers: Health, Rights, and Animal Welfare. The Future of Meat? Pace University, New York City Campus, New York.

Hite, Adele. (2020, January 7). The role of dietary policy in opposing animal source food consumption. Workshop: Ruminant Agriculture: Essential for Sustainable Societies. American Forage and Grassland Council Annual Conference, Greenville, SC.

Hite, Adele. (2019, May 18). The history and politics of dietary guidelines in America. Lakes Area Low Carb Conference, Essentia Health, Pequot Lakes, Minnesota.

Hite, Adele. (2020, January 17). Clinical protocols and standards of care for therapeutic carbohydrate restriction: Past, present, and future. LowCarb USA, Boca Raton, Florida.

Hite, Adele H. & Pamela A. Schoenfeld. (2015). Open letter to the Secretaries of the U.S. Departments of Agriculture and Health and Human Services on the creation of the 2015 Dietary Guidelines for Americans. Entered as “Submitted Material” to Hearing before the Committee on Agriculture, House of Representatives, 114 Congress, Oct. 7, 2015

Hite, Adele H. (2015, March 24). Oral Testimony on the 2015 Report of the Dietary Guidelines Advisory Committee. U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Bethesda, MD.

O’Connor, A. (2015, February 19). Nutrition panel calls for less sugar and eases cholesterol and fat restrictions. New York Times.

Hite, Adele H. (2015, February). What if there were no dietary guidelines? 4.


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More with Adele

Hite was co-author, with Jennifer Calihan, of a self-published meal-planning book, Dinner Plans: Easy Vintage Meals.

Hite was a widely respected senior editor and writer for Diet Doctor for over three years. Sadly, she died of metastatic breast cancer on April 22, 2022. She was 58.


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