Association of Diabetes Care & Education Specialists

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Don’t Miss: “Plant-Based Culinary Skills for a Healthy Gut” in Baltimore!

May 10, 2018

If you are planning on attending AADE18 in Baltimore, be sure to stay for “Plant-Based Culinary Skills for a Healthy Gut” (with Meghan Jardine, Rachel Franks, and Karen Smith) for an enhanced learning experience that includes tasting delicious food! 

Culinary skills education is a cutting-edge service that will improve the health of people with diabetes (PWD). Diabetes educators are in a unique position to provide this training to their patients. As educators, we can develop learning activities that build meal planning skills, including recipe development, grocery shopping, and the ability to create healthy, delicious, and affordable meals, healing to the body and gut. Don’t like to cook? No problem! There are quick and easy solutions for meal planning for the non-culinary individual. By participating in hands-on cooking and food preparation training, PWD will be able to prepare meals that improve diet quality while maintaining eating pleasure.

Plant-based diets are becoming more popular for weight loss, general health, and treating and preventing diabetes. Evidence suggests vegetarian and vegan eating patterns are associated with lower rates of diabetes and heart disease. The health of gut microbiota can improve with healthy plant-based eating that is high in dietary fiber, which increases the production of short chain fatty acids (SCFA). The health benefits of SCFA are numerous, including improved absorption of nutrients, improved satiety, and a reduction in insulin resistance.

This session will review the literature on plant-based nutrition, diabetes and microbiota, as well as evidence-based guidelines for implementation. A whole-foods, plant-based eating pattern includes whole grains, fruits, vegetables, legumes, nuts, and seeds. These food groups improve insulin sensitivity and have a protective effect on beta-cell function. Evidence indicates that plant-based eating patterns can reduce the risk of complications of diabetes. All PWD can benefit from eating a plant-based diet which will improve diet quality and potentially reduce the need for medications. 

Behavior change is one of the most challenging aspects of managing diabetes. Including cooking classes in diabetes education provides patients with a multi-sensory learning experience. Patients get to see the food, smell the aromas, and taste the product – which can make a huge difference in motivating behavior change. 

This session also includes case presentations by PWD who have vastly improved their health by adopting a plant-based diet. Additionally, we share best practices in food demonstrations and offer attendees the opportunity to sample the food! Come learn, taste, and experience how culinary medicine can improve your practice and improve the health of your patients. 

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