Dietician Heather Harmsen discusses:
- What is a plant-based diet?
- Plant-based diet and health outcomes
- What are key nutrients considerations?
- Environmental impact
- Practical applications.
Plant based-diets are a growing trend and there is increased interest in this way of eating. The benefits of plant-based eating in the research is growing, however, we need more. A vegetarian and vegan diet can be incorporated as a healthy eating pattern when planned well.
- Move toward more whole food intake.
- Follow plant-based eating in the context of enjoying a variety of food and food groups.
- Take the challenge of eating 30+ plant foods per week
- Variety and diversity are key.
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Heather Harmsen bio
Heather completed her Bachelor degree in Physiology and Psychology before training as a dietitian in South Africa (UCT). She spent eight years practising as a community dietitian in the UK covering a wide range of nutritional areas, including nutritional management of diabetes, cardiac rehabilitation, weight management and elderly care. Heather returned to South Africa at the end of 2015 and has been working with a practice specialising in gut health. She also has experience within the corporate setting, including wellness assessments for medical aid schemes and corporate health promotion. Heather has training in motivational counselling and behaviour change therapy, which she adds to her clinical practice to help facilitate change. Heather has successfully contributed to training modules for fellow dietitians and enjoys delivering group programmes focused on gastrointestinal conditions, more specifically irritable bowel syndrome.
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