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Industry converges to celebrate training achievements

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Retailers, suppliers and popular industry faces came together to celebrate the education achievements at the HFI annual lecture and lunch.

Presenting a hugely informative talk, Dr Rupy Aujla gave the Jack Noah Memorial Lecture on the theme of ‘food as medicine’.

During his talk, he highlighted the lack of nutritional training among doctors, something he is working hard to change. He believes that our attitude to food needs to alter, seeing it as a lifestyle medicine, and something that is integral to every function in the body.

“I believe what we eat is one of the most important choices we can make for our health. Food is beautiful as well as medicinal,” he commented.

The doctor explained that during his five-year medical training, he received less than 10 weeks of nutrition training, adding that this was mirrored at many other universities.

He is trying to change this, having created The Doctor’s Kitchen to promote the medicinal benefits of food, as well as creating opportunities for doctors to learn about food and nutrition, and how to cook healthy food, through a series of new courses.

“It is about creating a new generation of doctors who are as passionate about food as medicine,” he said, adding that he would like to see ‘community kitchens’ created in all GP surgeries in the UK.

“There is an obvious association between what we eat and the
health outcomes of the country,” he added.

In addition to Dr Aujla, Sara Novacovic, who owned Oliver’s Wholefoods until recently, delivered an entertaining after lunch speech, where she talked about the early days of the business, her experiences in the trade and how the industry has changed.

The annual lecture and lunch is also the time when the Health Food Institute announces the winners of its annual awards.

The deserving winners of the James Henry Cook Award were couple Roger and Tessa Oliver, who own Healthright, in Chesham. The Ian Martin NAHS Student of the Year was awarded to Sashka Bown, from Barnett’s Wholefoods, while the Better Retailing accolade went to Niki Davies, from Chester Health Store.

The HFMA Roger Lane Scholarship Award winner was announced as Allen Harding, from Oliver’s Wholefoods, for achieving the top mark in the online and accredited HFI Nutritional Adviser’s Award in 2017, while new fellows were announced as Robin Holiday, Paul Moore, Brian Halls and Helen Pollard.

And the Jimmy Lee Richardson Diploma Award, for the candidate who achieved the highest marks in the HFI Diploma, went to Ellen Perrin, previously of Healthright.

The winners of the Target Publishing HFI Bursary were also revealed as Serena Norris and Ellie Musson, full details of which can be found on page 18 of this issue.

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