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Vegetarian Conference Returns to Loma Linda

More than 700 researchers, experts, and advocates are scheduled to participate in the sixth such conference, held every five years.

Are you a loyal vegetarian or vegan? Many Loma Lindans with backgrounds in the Seventh-day Adventist faith are strict vegetarians.

From Feb. 24 – 26, those invested in a plant-based diet will have a chance to meet and learn from more than 700 researchers, experts, and advocates during the sixth International Congress on Vegetarian Nutrition, aka 6ICVN.

Loma Linda University Medical Center will again play host to the event, which is held once every five years. It is the only time when some of the world’s greatest scientists and scholars in plant-based diets gather to unveil major research findings and raise some provocative ideas, LLUMC officials said through a written news release.

“We are very pleased to welcome to 6ICVN these top minds who promise to bring us exciting findings and breakthroughs from the world of plant-based diets,” Dr. Tricia Penniecook, dean of Loma Linda University School of Public Health said through the written statement.

“Professional and public interest in vegetarian nutrition has reached unprecedented levels because of clear links between plant-based diets and health. 6ICVN will provide a forum for a review of all the best research, concepts, and applications of vegetarian dietary practices for preventing diseases and promoting health,” says Dr. Joan Sabate, 6ICVN chairman and chairman of the Department of Nutrition at Loma Linda University School of Public Health.

Organizers said this year’s event will feature results from a worldwide nutrition clinical trial, to be published in an upcoming edition of the New England Journal of Medicine.

Other major research organizers say will be presented at the conference:

  • The link between diet and longevity. Among the most consistent findings in nutritional epidemiology is that certain diet patterns are associated with lower chronic disease risk over very long follow-up periods. Learn about the latest research showing the link between the benefits of plant-centered diets, limiting intake of processed foods and living longer.
  • Can higher blood levels of omega-3 fatty acid reduce the risk of Alzheimer’s? Risk for dementia, most notably Alzheimer Disease, rises with age, doubling every five years after age 65 to eventually impact 30 to 50 percent of those over 90 years of age. With an aging population and no cure in sight, researchers have discovered that you can reduce reduced risk of Alzheimer’s with higher blood levels of the omega-3 fatty acid, DHA.
  • Reducing the risk of osteoporosis. In contrast to an earlier, almost exclusive focus on calcium and vitamin D for protecting bones, recent investigation of diet and osteoporosis has identified many components that affect bone mineral density and risk of fracture. Total dietary patterns that are healthy and balanced and heavily plant based are beneficial to bone as well as to heart disease and other chronic conditions.
  • How vegetarian diets can reduce body weight. Losing weight continues to be the quest of millions of Americans. In observational studies, people following vegetarian diets typically have lower body weights. A new study of 608 participants who adopted vegetarian diets found that participants lost between 1.8kg and 7.8kg. The upshot? Eat your veggies to lose weight.
  • How what you eat can hurt the planet. For millennia mankind has obtained the necessary food for its sustenance in a sustainable manner. This isn’t the case anymore. Against the backdrop of current worldwide population growth, particularly the rise of the middle class and its appetite for foods of animal origin, current global food production and consumption patterns are not sustainable. Scientists have recently shown that we have already trespassed several of the safety boundaries that govern planetary homeostasis, including loss of biodiversity and climate change.

For more information, go to, www.vegetariannutrition.org

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