The holidays are approaching; They aren’t just a season. It's a feeling!
The holidays are approaching, during the new norm; lets enjoy with safety.
I’m already excited and now some of you have plans to go on trips and visiting their home towns and all. Holiday season always comes with a joy and never fades the smile on our face. It brings happiness, love and peace all around and sales too (wink).
As we get older, we often change into a blinkered mind-set and forget what once made us happy.
We get stuck in the rat race or are continuously saving for a holiday that we have booked or we are too busy working to take a moment and see what once made us joyful.
Old and young, everyone indulges in the festive season in their own ways—some get in the holiday spirit by music and food, others go all out on decorations and host parties (virtual ones count too!) and many engage in the time-honored tradition of gift shopping—no matter how your circle celebrates. It’s time to be thankful for the moments that is shared by one another; may it be in person or virtual.
Today I’m starting a new series titled; NUTRITION. Before I begin, it’s important to ask what is nutrition?
Nutrition is the study of nutrients in food, how the body uses them, and the relationship between diet, health, and disease.
Nutritionists use ideas from molecular biology, biochemistry, and genetics to understand how nutrients affect the human body.
Nutrition also focuses on how people can use dietary choices to reduce the risk of disease, what happens if a person has too much or too little of a nutrient, and how allergies work.
Nutrients provide nourishment. Proteins, carbohydrates, fat, vitamins, minerals, fiber, and water are all nutrients. If people do not have the right balance of nutrients in their diet, their risk of developing certain health conditions increase.
Now, you know the reason why nutrition is a big factor in disease and how we can treat our bodies with the proper foods and diet.
In this age, you would think our health professional industry would gain more knowledge on this very subject. Here is an article written by Tim Newman on January 9, 2020, that explains it all:
The New England Journal of Medicine recently published an article entitled “Simulation of Growth Trajectories of Childhood Obesity into Adulthood.” The models in the study projected that 57.3% of today’s children will be obese by age 35. The bleak predictions of future health trends such as these reaffirm the need for health professionals to be knowledgeable about nutrition.
YOUR THE ONLY ONE THAT CAN -
Patients expect physicians to be sources of information related to nutrition. In fact, 61% of respondents to an American Dietetic Association (now the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics) survey stated that they believe physicians are a “very credible” source of nutrition information.
At the same time, though, in a study of internal medicine interns, 86% of respondents admitted to being inadequately trained to provide nutritional counseling. This inadequacy starts early in a physician’s career, with 51.1% of medical school graduates in 2005 reporting that they received insufficient nutrition education during medical school.
Take the field of cardiology, for example, where a recent study found that, among a cohort of 930 cardiologists, 90% believe their role includes providing patients with basic nutrition information.
In the same group of physicians, though, 90% stated that they had received little-to-no training in nutrition during their fellowship, 59% stated that they had received no nutrition during internal medicine training, and 31% reported no nutrition education in medical school. Simply put, the perceived role of physicians and the training they are given don’t match up.
This is not a matter of self-reported opinion either, because curricula also lack dedicated nutrition training, and this is not a new phenomenon. In 1962, the American Medical Association (AMA)’s Council on Foods and Nutrition held a conference pertaining to the “inadequate recognition, support and attention” given to nutrition education in medical schools. The council acknowledged that nutrition is intimately involved in the pathogenesis of chronic and degenerative diseases and that the medical curriculum was lagging with respect to advances in nutrition science.
The interrelatedness of medicine and nutrition was recognized by the council as more than the just the treatment of isolated nutrient deficiencies.
In 1976, the AMA conducted a mail survey to better understand the status of nutrition education in U.S. medical schools. When 102 medical schools responded to the surveys, fewer than 20% of schools reported requiring a nutrition course. The schools cited lack of funds, inadequate number of physicians trained in clinical nutrition, and limited amount of time available in the curriculum as limitations for increased nutrition education. This forty-year-old survey also highlighted the increased interest in nutrition from students and faculty at these institutions.7 We can only assume this interest has since grown.
The scientific conferences and congressional hearings in the decades leading up to the 80s drew attention to the need to improve nutrition education in U.S. medical schools. As a result, the National Research Council Committee on Nutrition in Medical Education published recommendations in 1985 stating that a minimum of 25 to 30 classroom hours during preclinical years should be allotted to covering the topics in nutrition that were underscored by the committee. For the past two decades, research spearheaded by University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill has tracked the state of nutrition education in U.S. medical schools every four years. Unfortunately, the data show no sign of changes in the average hours required in nutrition education since 2000. The most recent survey during the 2012-2013 academic year included 121 medical schools, with an average of 19 hours (SD =13.7) of nutrition education in their curriculum. The survey showed that 71% of medical schools failed to meet the minimum recommendation of 25 hours, 36% provided 12 or fewer hours, and 9% provided none.
Current nutrition education is evidently not translating into practice when only 10% of primary care physicians include weight counseling for patients, and fewer than half of obese and overweight patients are advised to lose weight. Primary care practitioners overwhelmingly support requiring additional training so that they will be better informed about the care they provide to their patients with obesity.
The Association of American Medical Colleges has recently declined to incorporate nutrition into its new blueprint for medical competencies. The 2013 American Council for Graduate Medical Education (ACGME) program requirements for Graduate Medical Education in Cardiovascular Disease neglects to mention nutrition. This continues to be the case in the most recent iteration of the ACGME requirements along with the ACGME for Internal Medicine. These examples show that both medical schools and graduate medical education have yet to legitimize the value of incorporating nutrition training through their competencies.
Three programs that have become recognized for their innovative approach to nutrition curriculum at medical schools include:
The Nutrition in Medicine (NIM) Project – since 1995 this program has aided in the development and distribution of nutrition curriculum for medical students through comprehensive online courses free of charge. The curriculum is a 29-unit curriculum covering basic science content along with clinical applications through cases. About 50% of medical schools actively use the NIM curriculum and the flexibility of the curriculum has allowed for varied implementation at these schools. A more recent initiative by the NIM team is the Nutrition Education for Practicing Physicians for residents, fellows, and practicing physicians. These online modules differ from the medical school resources through the greater level of clinical detail and practical applications.
Healthy Kitchens, Healthy Lives – The Culinary Institute of America and the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health have collaborated as a strategy to enhance physician ability and motivation for nutrition counseling through interactive cooking experiences. The program uses teaching kitchens to demonstrates how nutrition science can be translated into nutritious meals.
This initiative has shown to be successful in changing physicians’ dietary practices and their inclination to offer nutrition counseling at a 3-month follow-up. Currently, over 6,000 health professionals have taken the course. This initiative has expanded to 32 organizations located in 16 different states, plus Italy and Japan. The kitchens are active in universities, hospitals, and corporate buildings.
Tulane University School of Medicine’s Goldring Center for Culinary Medicine – this is the first teaching kitchen implemented at a medical school. The center trains medical students and professionals through culinary medicine classes in the form of electives and seminars as well as continuing education. The idea is grounded in the idea that the knowledge to cook nutritious meals encourages patients to buy vegetables and fruits that they previously avoided because they didn’t know how to prepare them. Tulane offers an institutional and away rotation at Johnson & Whales University in Providence Rhode Island where students can participate in hands-on culinary and culinary nutrition classes as well as an academic research project related to medical nutrition therapy. Medical students can also opt to take an 8-class culinary medicine elective during their first or second year of school.
The physician is the head of the care team and is responsible for directing care and allocating personnel and resources. Physicians see many patients when they are most in need of nutrition guidance. Therefore, physicians should be able to assess and recognize nutrition-related problems, and appropriately coordinate patient care. Let us hope that these programs are increasingly adopted in medical education so that physicians will be better equipped to address the health of their patients.
Nutrition for a Healthy Life
Constant exposure to our environment, the things we eat, and stresses from both inside and outside our bodies all cause us to age over time. This film explores those biological processes of aging, how we can maintain health throughout our lives with healthy lifestyles, and how scientists are learning more about the specific nutrients that can positively impact health.
Until next time, a wise saying - the heart that gives thanks is a happy one, for we cannot feel thankful and unhappy at the same time.