Nutritional issues are increasingly recognised in the course of respiratory diseases, from primary prevention to advanced disease care. During the 2014 ERS International Congress in Munich, Germany, the topic was addressed in a Clinical Year in Review session. This review highlights new insights in generic and disease-specific nutritional issues from recently published peer-reviewed articles. The clinical relevance of obesity was highlighted in primary and secondary prevention across all respiratory diseases. Radiographic imaging was explored for characterisation of metabolic phenotypes as an integrated part of diagnostic work-up. Muscle regenerative defects and the autophagy-lysosome pathway were identified as new leads for combatting muscle wasting.