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2nd annual 'Food as Medicine Symposium' is 'A Bridge to Health'


Tue, Oct 11th 2022 02:40 pm

On Oct. 13, the Buffalo Niagara Medical Campus’ health and well-being division will present its second annual “Food as Medicine Symposium,” bringing together a range of national and local pioneers in the field to discuss research and policy in the “Food as Medicine” space.

The keynote address “Food as Medicine: Dietary Priorities and Policy Actions After the White House Conference.” It will be presented by Dr. Dariush Mozaffarian, dean of policy at Tufts Friedman School of Nutrition Science and Policy. The symposium will be held at the UB Center for Bioinformatics and Life Sciences at 701 Ellicott St., Buffalo. More information about the symposium can be found here. All are welcome to purchase tickets to join the virtual event. Students can register to join at no charge. Tickets to attend in person are sold out.

A press release noted, “BNMC and its partner institutions have been a driving force in a campuswide effort to improve access to healthy food in hospitals and the surrounding community, collaborating with Kaleida Health, Roswell Park Comprehensive Cancer Center and other medical facilities on the campus. Together, they have implemented the ‘Farm to Hospital’ program, which has connected local farmers and growers to food procurement systems at area hospitals. This program has allowed BNMC partners serve healthy, locally sourced food to the tens of thousands of patients and visitors that rely on campus resources each year while also benefitting local farmers and agricultural entrepreneurs.”

More recently, the BNMC has spearheaded formation of the Western New York Food as Medicine Coalition, a group that brings more than 40 partners together to share best practices and expand and accelerate the impact of “Food as Medicine” programs on advancing health in our region.

Elizabeth (Beth) Machnica, director of community well-being at BNMC said, “Food is undoubtedly a major factor in the determination of medical outcomes, decades of research have shown us this. What we are missing is a broader awareness of the concept and the movement. Our symposium is open to all that would like to learn more and join us in discovering the latest developments and innovations to engage and empower our communities to evaluate the relationships between diet, medical outcomes, and overall health and well-being.”

Conference organizer and BNMC Associate Director of Health and Well-Being Marla Guarino added “The ‘Food as Medicine’ discipline is growing and gaining momentum in the United States. At the BNMC, we want to ensure our campus and community are at the forefront of innovation and leadership in the field. This is important for our city, which has been – and still is – home to food inequities in our communities. Our symposium will spotlight that and point us toward how we can make meaningful change.”

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