As chairman of ESPEN I would like to thank all those who have contributed to this ESPEN book with a special mention to its editor in chief Professor Lubos Sobotka.

Insufficient awareness of the prevalence and the side effects of malnutrition are widely spread among European countries. The Council of Europe has recently released a resolution describing the potential for structured actions to detect, prevent and treat malnutrition. This book is aimed at providing the theoretical knowledge and the practical tools for addressing these issues. The book has been formatted to be easily understandable by all health care providers as well as by pre-graduate students.

The ESPEN community is proud to contribute to the global effort to raise standards of nutritional care. The first edition of the book has been a tremendous success translated in many languages in and outside of Europe. The second edition has been massively updated and will help ESPEN to further support its educational activities. Indeed ESPEN organizes annual courses focused on the practice of clinical nutrition and on specialized aspects related to the evaluation of metabolic pathways, offers a structured program of educational lectures during its annual congress and currently develops an internet-based educational curriculum in human nutrition.

On behalf of ESPEN, I wish you a very stimulating reading and invite you to join ESPEN or encourage your colleagues to become an ESPEN member.

Claude Pichard
Chairman of ESPEN