Health impact of dietary education of plant based diet to a group of people with chronic illnesses

Chung Wah Clare YU, S. S. F. LEUNG, V. LEE, R. S. M. CHAN

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Non communicable disease was increasingly prevalent in Hong Kong. Many adults were suffering from suboptimal health. Not many adults were taking the minimum recommendation of five servings of vegetables and fruits a day. To change one’s dietary habit may become easier with the support of volunteer doctors, nutritionists, chefs and peer buddies. This is a report showing the effectiveness of such an intervention.
Twenty-eight adults [mean age(SD) 52(12) years] participated in the program. They attended a two-and-a-half-hour session weekly for 4 consecutive weeks. At each session, sharing on the theory and practical aspect of a healthy vegetarian diet was given by doctors, nutritionist and other volunteers who were vegetarians. A simple vegetarian meal was then served. A tutor was allocated to each group as leader and to arrange group activity to dine in a vegetarian restaurant. Besides, participants were given hand outs, recipes and address of local restaurants. Dietary habit and health condition was enquired for each participant in the first and the last week. Comparison were made and the statistical significance was tested using a selfrating Likert scale (from 1. most inconsistent to 10. most consistent) on six statements and a food frequency checklist.
Participants rated a significantly higher scoring on the statement “I feel better in my digestion” (p<0.05). Daily intake frequency on refined grain, meat and poultry, processed foods, refined sugar and strong seasoning decreased significantly. Daily intake frequency on whole grains increased significantly (p<0.05).
This study has proven the efficacy of improving the intake of whole grain plant based food and an improvement of health in general. It is possible that the effect will be more obvious after a longer period of change. There was not enough data to suggest that participants had been converted to vegetarian, which was not the aim of the study. Copyright © 2018 ACD. All rights reserved.
Original languageEnglish
Publication statusPublished - Jul 2018


Yu, C. C. W., Leung, S. S. F., Lee, V., & Chan, R. S. M. (2018, July). Health impact of dietary education of plant based diet to a group of people with chronic illnesses. Poster presented at The 7th Asian Congress of Dietetics: The Rise of Nutrition and Dietetics in Asia, The Hong Kong Polytechnic University, Hong Kong, China.


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