NUNM Food as Medicine Institute Partners with Saint Luke’s Hospital

Julie Briley, ND

The FAMI Alliance will expand community-based nutrition education and help reduce chronic diseases using food as medicine.

National University of Natural Medicine (NUNM) today announced it has formed an educational partnership with Saint Luke’s Hospital in Kansas City, Missouri, to collaborate in the delivery of clinical and community education nutrition workshops and research in the Midwest. The Food as Medicine Institute Alliance was created to help expand community-based nutrition education by promoting better dietary choices to reduce chronic diseases.

The new Food as Medicine Institute (FAMI) Alliance will help establish the growth of the NUNM Food as Medicine Everyday (FAME) series of community workshops through the Muriel I. Kauffman Women’s Heart Center at Saint Luke’s Hospital. The workshops are based on the NUNM FAME nutrition and cooking curriculum, which was launched in Portland in 2011. The first series of FAME workshops at Saint Luke’s are scheduled to begin Feb. 13, 2018.

Leading the FAMI Alliance is Julie Briley, ND, the co-founder of FAMI and the FAME workshops. Briley, who co-authored Food as Medicine Everyday, Reclaim Your Health with Whole Foods (NUNM Press, 2016) with FAMI co-founder Courtney Jackson, ND, said the partnership with Saint Luke’s Hospital, “is a collaboration that’s helping to bridge the gap between Western biomedicine and naturopathic medicine by using nutrition to prevent and treat disease.”

NUNM’s Food as Medicine Institute was established in 2014 to promote nutrition education not only among the public, but also among healthcare professionals seeking to expand their understanding of the relationship between health and nutrition as a means of preventing and reducing chronic disease. The popular FAME program is a 12-week series of workshops comprised of nutrition lectures followed by hands-on cooking demonstrations of simple whole-foods meals that participants help prepare and share at the end of the class. The unique 90-minute classes are taught by licensed naturopathic physicians or graduates of NUNM’s Master of Science in Nutrition program.

Briley said that nutrition is a key component of naturopathic medical training as graduates are licensed as primary care physicians. “We have long known that nutrition is a foundational building block to helping patients achieve and maintain better health,” Briley said. “The FAMI Alliance will expand community-based nutrition education and help reduce chronic diseases using food as medicine. We’re very excited to expand the FAME series of workshops to the Midwest and welcome Saint Luke’s Hospital as a founding member of the FAMI Alliance.”

Marcia McCoy, RN, MSN, director of Saint Luke’s Muriel I. Kauffman Women’s Heart Center, noted, “Many women are unaware that heart disease is the number one killer of women in the U.S. We know that one in four women will die of some form of cardiovascular disease. Our Center is taking a proactive approach to help empower women to take charge of their heart health and to address it before it becomes a problem. The FAME workshops, programs and research we’ll undertake with NUNM are ideal complements to the other tools we’ve developed at Saint Luke’s to help assist women in their health journeys.”

McCoy said Lucas Schubert, MScN, an NUNM nutrition graduate and trained FAME educator, will spearhead the FAMI Alliance at Saint Luke’s Muriel I. Kauffman Women’s Heart Center as its nutritional health coordinator, developing and teaching the FAME series workshops, providing individual nutritional consultations, and overseeing additional nutritional programs.

FAMI Background

FAMI traces its roots back to a pilot program called the ECO Project, first formed in 2011 as a partnership with Bob’s Red Mill founders, Bob and Charlee Moore. The ECO Project offered free nutrition and hands-on cooking workshops to approximately 500 low-income families in the Portland area. The successful ECO Project workshops formed the basis of the FAME community series. The Moore’s support has been a driving force in FAMI’s development and the establishment of a state-of-the-art research and teaching kitchen on campus for NUNM students.

Due to the popularity of the FAME series, NUNM has increased the number of public classes it offers on campus and throughout the Portland metro area at grocery stores and other venues for those who want to learn more about whole-foods nutrition and the preparation of delicious, healthy meals. Since 2014, FAMI has also been leading FAME workshops at Coffee Creek Correctional Facility in Wilsonville, Oregon. In addition, NUNM now offers an annual FAMI Symposium for healthcare professionals every February featuring some of the nation’s top nutritionists, educators and physicians.

For more information about the FAME program at Saint Luke’s or to register, visit the Food as Medicine Everyday Program online.

For more information about the FAME program at NUNM, visit NUNM’s Food as Medicine Everyday Series online.

ABOUT NUNM

Founded in 1956, National University of Natural Medicine is the oldest accredited naturopathic medical school in North America and a leading educational authority in natural medicine education and research. NUNM offers doctoral, master’s and bachelor’s degree programs through its College of Naturopathic Medicine; College of Classical Chinese Medicine; School of Graduate Studies; and School of Undergraduate Studies. Nationally recognized for its exceptional education and training of licensed natural medicine practitioners, our graduates create exciting careers as integrative medicine researchers, nutrition counselors, public health advocates, mental health experts, and more. NUNM’s Institutes offer a wide range of stimulating community education classes for healthcare professionals and the general public. NUNM Health Centers, the SIBO Center for Digestive Health, and NUNM’s affiliated Portland metro community clinics provide clinical training to its students while also delivering healthcare services to many thousands of patients each year.

ABOUT SAINT LUKE’S HOSPITAL

Saint Luke’s Hospital of Kansas City is one of 10 hospitals in the Saint Luke’s Health System. It is a faith-based, not-for-profit health system committed to the highest levels of excellence in health care and health-related services, and independent academic medical center dedicated to medical education and research. Under the umbrella of Saint Luke’s Health System, Saint Luke’s Mid America Heart Institute is the nation’s first heart hospital and leader in cardiovascular disease treatment and research. Since performing the world’s first balloon angioplasty in acute heart attack patients in 1980, Saint Luke’s physicians have continued to pioneer and perfect innovative new approaches to heart health care and treatments. In 2014, Saint Luke’s Muriel I. Kaufmann Women’s Heart Center celebrated 20 years of advocating for women’s heart health. The Center is recognized as the first women’s heart center of its kind in the United States to take a proactive role in addressing the unique challenges related to women’s heart health.

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