Planetary Health Alliance meeting 2022

2022 Planetary Health Annual Meeting

October 31-November 2, 2022

The Annual Meeting was a fully-hybrid conference with the in-person event held at Harvard University and an option for free virtual attendance. Visit the conference website to learn more about the conference’s speakers. Virtual attendance is free.

The theme of the 5th Planetary Health Annual Meeting (PHAM) was Planetary Health: Building the Field and Growing the Movement. See the schedule and learn about the research and projects abstracts that were presented as lightning talks and interactive poster sessions throughout the week.

Planetary Health Alliance PBHP side event

PBHP Side event

October 31 2022

PBHP UK hosted a side event on October 31st 10.15-11.15am GMT.

Panel members were Shireen Kassam, Linda Karlberg, Hayley Tait, Laura Freeman and Declan Cotter.

This house believes that sustainable plant-based nutrition education should be a core component of all healthcare curricula.

Sustainable, plant-based diets are a key part of the solution in the fight against the climate and ecological crises. In addition, a predominantly or exclusively plant-based diet has a number of health advantages with decades of research supporting this way of eating for prevention, management and treatment of chronic conditions. However, medical and allied health professional undergraduate and postgraduate curricula have been slow to incorporate and update nutrition education despite the fact that most disease management guidelines recommend dietary interventions alongside other lifestyle approaches as first line treatment. Not only are most chronic conditions preventable but in fact reversible and remission is now the goal in conditions such as type 2 diabetes. In the UK and US, most undergraduate medical education incorporates only a few hours of nutrition education focusing on nutritional deficiencies rather than the problems associated with the modern Western diet. This also requires a move away from prescription healthcare to a more counselling and coaching approach that considers the whole person in their social and cultural context. Improving diet quality and shifting to a predominantly plant-based diet in all populations is key to improving both individual physical and mental well-being and keeping the food system within planetary boundaries.

This panel discussion will bring together individuals at different stages of their medical career in both primary and secondary care in the UK to discuss barriers and challenges to incorporating nutrition education into curricula and daily medical practice. The panel will also present examples of successful projects that have improved nutrition literacy amongst students and practitioners.