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Wednesday, November 22, 2017
HomeHealthFood Alchemy for the Underserved: Whole Food and Plant Based Diets

Food Alchemy for the Underserved: Whole Food and Plant Based Diets

Julie Ward, Fresh Food Alchemy

Julie Ward, Fresh Food Alchemy


Today’s blog and HealthCetera interview continues a series exploring how integrative healing modalities are being shared with underserved populations. The focus is whole food, plant based diets and access for the underserved.


There are many variations in food habits and preferences influenced by culture, health needs, the media, and current trends. Much emphasis has been placed on the benefits of a plant based, whole food diet. Kaiser Permanente Health System has promoted a whole food, plant based diet as a healthier way to eat. Patient education material encourages patients to “Eat food. Not too much. Mostly plants.” (


A whole-food, plant-based diet is centered on whole, unrefined, or minimally refined plants. It’s a diet based on fruits, vegetables, tubers, whole grains, and legumes; and it excludes or minimizes meat (including chicken and fish), dairy products, and eggs, as well as highly refined foods like bleached flour, refined sugar, and oil. (


But are whole food, plant based foods accessible to all communities? What are ways in which underserved populations can access the types of fresh, whole foods being recommended by healthcare organizations, and the benefits of which are supported by current research? (


Eve Adler RN RYT speaks with Julie Ward, a Food Alchemist (, ACE Health Coach, member of the Los Angeles Food Policy Council, Co-Chair of the Food As Medicine Working Group, and founder of Fresh Food Alchemy about her experiences bringing the knowledge of healthy food alternatives to underserved populations in Los Angeles.


Tune in on Thursday at 1:00pm to HealthCetera Radio on WBAI 99.5 FM in New York City, or streaming online at; or you can listen to the interview anytime by clicking here:

Written by

<p>Eve Adler, MA, RN, is an associate dean in the Health Sciences Department at Santa Monica College (SMC) and is a registered yoga teacher. She is committed to providing opportunities for education and personal expression to underserved populations interested in health and self-care. Ms. Adler works strategically and collaboratively with the SMC Communications and Media Studies Department, the Public Policy Institute, the Modern Languages Department and community-based Integrative Health Practitioners Program to broadcast the voices and issues of the underserved across multiple media platforms. Her work influences health policy by bringing the power of health care advocacy to the grassroots movements of communities in West Los Angeles.</p>

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