On the Rise: Eat to Live

It’s fairly common for a medical practitioner to recommend a patient make dietary changes after a chronic condition strikes. But a new approach is emerging—using food to prevent or treat disease. The field of integrative nutrition focuses on incorporating nutrition throughout the different stages of life in order to prevent or manage illness, says Katie Ferraro, adjunct nutrition instructor at UC San Diego Extension. “As a health care practitioner, if your ultimate goal is to reduce pain, death and dying from chronic disease, which is what kills most Americans, you have to acknowledge there is a food component.”

Most doctors haven’t taken a dedicated nutrition class, Ferraro says. Extension is working to change that, offering an Integrative Nutrition Certificate for existing or aspiring health care professionals, and others who want to learn about nutrition as a means to promote wellness and prevent disease. “This is an important foundation, and UC San Diego Extension is really taking a leadership role.”

Two-thirds of American adults are overweight or obese, and many have sought advice from a medical practitioner, but “there’s this major gap in knowledge about the effects of what we eat and don’t eat on our health,” Ferraro says. On the plus side, more practitioners are beginning to incorporate integrative practices into traditional western medicine. “It’s wonderful that we have practitioners who are now starting to get more interested, both personally and professionally, in incorporating nutrition.”

Learn more about Integrative Nutrition on our website.

luis gomez
I owe everything to the way I eat. After one year of adhering to a plant based lifestyle, I have reversed obesity, dropped my BMI level 10points, reduced blood pressure, adjusted cholesterol levels back to normal, reversed the threat of a fatty liver and pre-diabetes, and lost 80lbs. All thanks to a health practitioner advising me to reduce my intake of red meat. After much research, I realized the adverse effects of animal protein and the human body. Since then, I try to stay as organic, raw, and as close to nature as I can.

This is a course I can see myself taking.

Let food be thy medicine.
8/17/2018 2:14:07 PM

One thing is clear: Obese people react much more hedonistically to sweet, fat-laden food in the pleasure and reward circuits of the brain than healthy-weight people do.
7/21/2018 11:13:47 AM

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