NYC hospital announces pilot program for patients to adopt plant-based diet

by | August 29, 2018

Brooklyn Borough President Eric L. Adams has announced today that a first of its kind plant-based medical program will take place in NYC’s Bellevue hospital. Through his passion and campaigning, the city invested $400,000 into this pilot program for patients to adopt a plant-based diet.

The Plant-Based Lifestyle Medicine Program is a pilot program to help patients transition to a whole foods, plant based diet to improve, and in some cases maybe even reverse, some chronic conditions including heart disease, diabetes, obesity, high cholesterol, and high blood pressure. It is designed to serve as a resource for adult patients suffering from chronic diseases who wish to reduce their risk through simple changes to their diet and lifestyle.

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The pilot program for patients is funded by NYC Health + Hospitals and will be open to at least 100 patients from all of the five NYC boroughs. A panel of doctors, nurses, dietitians, and life coaches are being recruited for the program, which is expected to launch in fall 2018.

The program is a result of Brooklyn Borough President Eric L. Adams passion and advocacy surrounding plant-based nutrition. Since personally experiencing the life changing effects of a plant-based diet, he has been focused on trying to bring its health benefits to the rest of the city. The pilot program for patients was born out a meeting with Deputy Mayor Herminia Palacio, NYC Health + Hospitals leaders, including Dr. Michelle McMacken, and other plant-based nutrition experts.

Dr. McMacken, who will direct the pilot program for patients, showed her support: “This program will assist patients who are living with chronic health conditions, giving them the guidance and support they need to transition to a healthy lifestyle. Healthy lifestyle habits have the potential to prevent, treat, and sometimes even reverse conditions such as high cholesterol, high blood pressure, Type 2 diabetes, and heart disease.”

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Borough President Adams spoke at a press release of the new pilot program today stating; “This clinic will champion a new paradigm for healthcare in New York and beyond, one in which patients gain freedom not only from debilitating, life-threatening chronic diseases but also from the harsh side effects and reduced quality of life associated with traditional, less effective treatments. The power of plant-based diets allowed me to reverse my Type 2 diabetes, and I’m elated that through this clinic, it will do the same — and more — for countless New Yorkers.”

The pilot program for patients to adopt a plant-based diet has been shown much support from other city and state officials, such as State Senator Brad Hoylman, State Senator Gustavo Rivera, Assembly Member Richard N. Gottfried, chair of the Health Committee, Assembly Member Harvey Epstein, Council Member Mark Levine, chair of the Committee on Health, and Dr. Dave Chokshi, chief population health officer at NYC Health + Hospitals and a physician at NYC Health + Hospitals/Bellevue among numerous others.

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Patients can be referred to the program by their primary caregivers and specialists within the NYC Health + Hospitals health system, as well as other health care providers. The program will also accept independent patients who meet program criteria.

Services for the pilot program for patients to adopt a plant-based diet will include:

  • Initial visit with a physician for a comprehensive evaluation, an overview of nutritional recommendations, discussion of how dietary changes can potentially impact the patients chronic conditions, and development of a monitoring and follow up plan.
  • A visit with a dietitian for individual assessment, counseling on the benefits of a plant-based diet, and help with meal planning.
  • Follow-up every 2-4 weeks
  • Individual in person and/or phone visits with lifestyle coaches to help with motivation.
  • Follow-up visits with the physician for monitoring and medication management (especially for patients with diabetes and/or hypertension)
  • Nursing visits as needed for blood pressure checks.

Anyone who is interested in taking part in the pilot program for patients to adopt a plant-based diet or interested in learning more may call (347) 507-3695

plant-based diet

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