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Alliance for a Healthier Generation Recognizes CHEF Program for Innovative Approach to Tackling Obesity February 12, 2018

San Antonio, TX – The Culinary Health Education for Families program at The Children’s Hospital of San Antonio received the Innovation Award for Health Care Provider Training and Education at the Second Annual Healthy Kitchens, Healthy Lives national conference. The award, presented in Napa, California on Saturday, recognizes leading health professional training programs providing innovative nutrition, physical activity, and obesity counseling education to their students. 

Since its launch in 2015, CHEF has offered culinary medicine training to physicians, registered dietitians, allied health professionals, hospital associates, patients and their caregivers in the San Antonio area. There are no pre-requisites for providers wishing to participate in the CHEF program and CHEF classes are offered to all interested. CHEF has trained more than 160 physicians and in 2017, nearly 100 physicians made more than 730 referrals to the program. 

Statistics show fewer than 30 percent of medical schools meet the minimum number of hours of education in nutrition and exercise science recommended by the National Academy of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. While 94 percent of physicians agree nutritional counseling should be a part of a patient visit, only 14 percent of doctors feel they have adequate training to do so. The Alliance for a Healthier Generation (Healthier Generation) established the award to highlight outstanding programs across the country tackling these concerns in an effort to reverse negative trends showing more and more Americans are overweight or obese.

“Obesity is one of the greatest public health threats of our time,” said Dr. Howell Wechsler, CEO of Healthier Generation. “If we are ever going to reduce the obesity epidemic in our country, we must do a better job of training our health care professionals so they can better counsel the patients they serve.”