“Food is the most underutilized weapon we have against chronic disease.
Knowing more about what’s in your food and how it got there, can help you take your health into your own hands. Culinary medicine is a new evidence-based field that blends the art of food and cooking with the science of medicine and is aimed at helping people reach good personal medical decisions about accessing and eating high quality meals that can prevent and treat disease and enhance well-being.” *
So says John La Puma, M.D. ** Dr. La Puma thinks that the food one eats is an important part of the person’s health and ought to be considered in all treatment plans. He thinks that all clinicians should have training in culinary medicine.
“ ..the foods you use as fuel and which get stored as fat, can all now be beamed to you (or your coach, if you choose). You can now see in real time, what you are doing to make yourself healthy and conversely what you’re doing to make yourself sick.
“The obesity solution he likes best is one that makes wellness fun. Mobile technology, tracking companies, and game creators are coming together to do this . The most innovative companies today are developing ways to send to your mobile device your most relevant data – food and beverage intake, activity, weight, sleep, stress response – and combine it with game-like managed competition. The objective is to entice you to compete with your social network for the healthiest lifestyle and be rewarded along the way with ongoing coaching and other incentives.
“Heart rate, blood pressure, and glucose levels will soon follow. Devices and apps are changing the landscape of how people can get healthy.
“Clinicians should be able to recommend trusted apps, devices and websites, write culinary medicine prescriptions, and know how food, like medicine, works in the body.
“Clinicians should be able to offer condition-specific food and lifestyle measures, with tech-enabled tracking support, if desired, before recommending prescription medication for most chronic conditions.
“A new consciousness about the power of food and cooking, combined with ever-advancing mobile technology, can put care back where it belongs, in the patient’s own hands.” *
Doctors learning nutrition – GREAT! Yes, the food we eat is an important part of our health and combining the information with today’s technology and then sending the information to our mobile devices so that we can see and utilize the information immediately. What technology!
The benefits of this would be immeasurable. However it must be done correctly. Misinformation about foods could destroy the effectiveness. Food fads, and over-emphasis, positive or negative, on some foods could have undesirable results.
“Everything in moderation”.
There should also be caution to use such information together with the insight and knowledge of a trained professional. A little knowledge can sometimes not be good. Even the latest scientific findings can be found to be incorrect, when in a few years, additional research reverses or limit’s the findings of earlier research.
And we ought always remember that, although food is nutrition, food should also be enjoyed. We eat foods at parties and celebrations for the “fun” of it and we enjoy someone’s casserole or dessert, because they have put much time and work into preparing it and because it tastes good. So if a food’s sodium level is a bit high or the saturated fat content is a couple grams over, unless, the individual is in the hospital bed and connected to a monitor, perhaps, we can go “light” on the criticism for the occasion.
* Nutrition Close-UP, Egg Nutrition Center, Winter 2015.
** John La Puna, MD is a board certified practicing internist, a professionally trained chef and New York Times bestselling author : Chef MD’s Big Book of Culinary Medicine, Visit online at drjohnlapuna.com