I recently returned from my 4th annual Food as Medicine Conference (FAM), a training program for health professionals to effectively integrate nutrition into their practices. I like to think of this community as my professional family. The 4-day program includes cutting edge presentations given by leading Functional Medicine and Integrative doctors, nutritionists, dietitians, social and environmental activists as well as incredible lunches created by Culinary Director Rebecca Katz. Two years ago Rebecca formed a team of us Cooks on Call (COC), Culinary Nutrition Educators, who help translate the science of nutrition in the kitchen. It’s one thing when doctors tell their patients to eat kale but it’s a whole other ballgame when they can tell that patient 5 different ways to prepare it.
Jeanne Wallace, PhD, CNC got a well-earned standing ovation first thing this morning for her brilliant Modulatinig Oncometabolic Syndrome: Integrative Diet & Nutrition to Complement Cancer Care. If there a Jeanne Wallace fan club, tell us how to join!
Many of us have long admired Brenda Davis, RD, as the eminent author of the authoritative texts on her lecture topic, Vegetarian, Vegan & Raw. Did you know about her remarkable research in the Marshall Islands on reversing diabetes? She gave us a preview and we look forward to the published paper. Core faculty member Cindy Geyer, MD rounded out a memorable morning and pulled it all together clinically with case studies in Condition-Specific Nutrition Therapies.
What a remarkable day, rich with diversity & texture. Elements of clinical practice this morning, with Cindy Geyer, MD leading us through Laboratory Basics and Kathie Swift, MS, RD sharing Simplifying Supplements. Supplement Jeopardy was a fun test of our knowledge! Lunch was utterly delicious: Rockin’ Black Bean Soup with Avocado Cream, greens, g/f cornbread muffins, Lime Citrus Halibut, Chef Stubb’s own plantain crisps, and Mexican slaw from Rebecca’s upcoming new book (gosh that was good! Lime cumin dressing…).
Great flow today, from Sheila Dean DSc, RD’s state-of-the-art science in Macro & Micro Nutrients to Joel Evans, MD’s remarkably smooth (and of course humorous!) Detoxification: A Food-Based Approach. Co-authors of The Inside Tract Gerard Mullin, MD and Kathie Swift, MS, RD provided When in Doubt, Follow the GUT and Digestive Healing & Elimination Diets respectively, an all-important guided tour of the essential science and clinical treatment of the digestive tract. Dr. Gordon led us in active meditation to shake out the stress, and Chef Rebecca Katz offered a brand new food demo this afternoon, Herbs & Spices: Science & Cuisine, with a tray of colorful spices and a tour of how they fit into the healing kitchen.
Day 1 at Food As Medicine 2012 was a great feast with over 300 marvelous people in attendance.
25% MD’s, 25% RD’s & Nutritionists, 11% Nurses & Nurse Practitioners, 10% Saybrook University Students, 4% Medical School Students & Residents. 6% are Medical School Faculty, 27% work with underserved communities. Geographically, the largest number of our attendees are from Maryland and California. A senior scientist is here from Ulaanbaatar, Mongolia and a physician from Beijing United Family Hospital in China. Rene Domersant from the Ministry of Health in Haiti, a participant in our Global Trauma Relief professional trainings, is here.Jeffrey Mills, Director of Food & Nutrition Services for DC Public Schools is here. Nora Pouillon of Restaurant Nora, the first certified organic restaurant in the US, and Judith Friedman of The Natural Gourmet Institute are here. The entire Krebs family from Selinsgrove, PA are here (mom’s a PT & MT, dad’s an MD, one daughter is a med student and another daughter a student). Sadja Greenwood, MD, MPH, a legendary sage is here from Bolinas, CA. The people are amazing!
To paraphrase a CMBM alum, “When I heard The Center for Mind-Body Medicine would be offering a seminar called ‘Mind, Mood & Food’ at Kripalu, I felt like the heavens were bringing all my favorite things together.” The “trifecta”, as I like to call it, was a beautiful blend of relevant material taught by engaging faculty in a setting where what was being taught could be practiced. Imagine learning about foods that support brain health and then going to Kripalu’s dining hall where those foods are waiting for you on an abundant buffet. Picture completing a moving meditation with Jim Gordon and then going to Yoga Dance during a seminar break. Kathie Swift spoke about the benefits of being in nature for brain health, and I’m convinced Mother Nature was a seminar participant as the weather was perfect for walks to the lake. It was seventy degrees in mid-March in the Berkshires!
Mark Pettus, Jay Lomard and Chuck Parker offered a wealth of knowledge and fantastic synergy as they fed off each other’s energy and complemented each other’s work. A big round of applause goes to the hard-working staff at Kripalu. They were wonderful to work with and jumped right in to run the program like a well-oiled machine. Mind, Mood & Food at Kripalu is definitely worth a repeat!
Are you concerned about your memory? Do you feel irritable much of the time? Is your stomach tied up in knots from chronic worry? Or are you just “stuck” and don’t know which way to turn?
What you may not realize is that your brain is a “hungry” organ and depends on a constant supply of nutrients that influence your mind, mood, energy and vitality! Your emotional and mental health is closely linked to your nutritional status. Food is a carrier of energy or “prana” that delivers unique substances that influence the health of your brain and consequently, your mind and mood.
How would you like to learn more about nutrition and the brain from some of the nation’s top experts, in a beautiful retreat setting in the Berkshire Mountains, where you can nourish yourself over a weekend full of learning, yoga, terrific people and delicious, colorful whole foods?
Join us for Mind, Mood & Food: Optimal Nutrition for the Brain March 16 – 18, 2012 at Kripalu Center for Yoga & Health in Stockbridge, MA, our brand new Food As Medicine seminar. Center Founder & Director James Gordon, MD and Kathie Swift, MS RD, nationally renowned clinical nutrition expert and educator; Jay Lombard, DO, a neurologist who makes learning brain biochemistry and physiology a joy and shows you step-by-step how to use nutrients for optimal functioning; Charles Parker, DO, a psychiatrist who worked with Daniel Amen to develop easy to follow, highly successful programs of nutritional healing; and Mark Pettus, MD, a gifted and compassionate holistic physician and author of It’s All in Your Head comprise our fabulous faculty.
Once a year, The Center for Mind-Body Medicine puts on the best introductory training program in medical nutrition therapy on the planet– a feast of science and wisdom. Always lively, always cutting-edge, our core faculty and guest speakers who are all leaders in their respective fields share the very latest in nutritional science and seasoned clinical pearls with our attendees. Our aim is to give our attendees both the knowledge and confidence they need to begin practicing on Monday morning.
James Joseph, PhD, was a highly distinguished research scientist– Director of the Neuroscience Laboratory, USDA Human Nutrition Research Center on Aging, at Tufts University– and he was also our friend. He passed away just days before Food As Medicine this June. My 18 year old son, attending Food As Medicine for the second time and who had heard Jim speak before, said the same thing I did on hearing of his passing: “No, no, no! Not Jim!” The thing about Jim was he was not only brilliant but endearing, and laugh-out-loud funny. What better way to convey the science than to have ‘em rolling in the aisles?
He always said that because of his USDA funding, we couldn’t sell the recordings of his talks, but that we could give them away. So it is with great pleasure that we offer you this treasure– a video of Jim Joseph’s lecture recorded at Food As Medicine in Baltimore in 2008.
Please do share!
Thank you, Jim, for a wonderful ride.