Come to a free seminar to learn about how to eat to be healthy and prevent disease on October 16! It’s free!
So Save the Date and We’ll Tell You More Soon!

By Beth Machnica, MPH, MS, RD

Erie county ranks 46th out of New York State’s 62 counties in health outcomes, which means our life expectancy and quality of life rank lower than most other New York State residents. Being home to the chicken wing comes at a cost — the leading cause of death in our region is heart disease, a diet-related preventable condition.

We’ve all heard “eat right and exercise more,” but having the know-how and means to do so is not accessible for all. Communities of color in our region suffer disproportionately from chronic disease, poverty, shorter lifespans, and social injustices, including food insecurity. While we cannot fix these issues overnight, food is a tool we can use to collectively address these issues.
Food as Medicine is a movement that is changing how healthcare is provided, and it’s much more than putting patients on a diet. It includes interventions designed to treat specific medical conditions, such as heart disease or diabetes, and simultaneously address food insecurity.

Research demonstrates that food as medicine interventions, such as medically tailored meals and produce prescriptions, result in better health outcomes, improved food security, and reduced medical costs. Thanks to community groups and local clinicians, food as medicine interventions are available in Buffalo, but aren’t widely practiced or accessible to all. We urgently need more clinicians to adopt food as medicine practices and collaborate with community partners to support and sustain them. Learn more about the Food as Medicine movement by attending the Buffalo Niagara Medical Campus (BNMC) 1st Annual Food as Medicine Symposium on October 16, 2021.

Beth Machnica is the Director of Health and Well-Being at BNMC. She is a registered dietitian nutritionist with training in public health.