Doctors, nutritional experts and interested members of the public are now gathered in Gisborne  for the second annual Veg and Vines conference.

This year’s attendees will focus on the theme Growing Your Health, the aim being to concentrate efforts on how to create and sustain healthy lifestyle changes at both the individual level and the health system level.

Of course a key feature of this relaxed three day event is not only to talk about the nutritional value of plant based meals but to eat them as well.

From breakfast to dinner, all meals served will be whole food plant-based.

Those attending include some of New Zealand’s leading plant-based medical practitioners doctors Patrick McHugh, Martyn Williamson, Coral Dixon and conference co-organiser, Dr Nick Wright.

One of the programme highlights of the event will be a discussion with Dr John A McDougall who will join the conference via Skype.

Dr McDougall is widely recognised as THE pioneering physician in the field of lifestyle medicine.

His food programmes are based on starches (corn, potatoes, rice, wheat, etc.) plus some generous servings of fruits and vegetables as well.

But the conference is not all medical based.

There are cooking demonstrations, a session on meditation and lots of chat.

A second major attraction of this year’s conference will be the presentation of Grant Dixon’s doco The Big Fat Lie – New Zealand’s first plant-based documentary.

In a recent discussion with WFL Dixon described how his seminal piece on the Kiwi plant-based effort had now gone through at least two re-generations since it was first shown at the University of Auckland on November 15.

He said it had been well been well received at various showings around the country was looking forward to the Veg and Vines response.

Conference co-organiser and personal trainer, Morgen Smith, will open the first session on Saturday morning with a catch-up on the what has happened in the whole food plant-based world over the past year.

On Friday afternoon she will also present some quick and effective exercise tips for beginner fitness in a 40 minutes practical session from which spandex has been barred.

The full conference program and its list of guest speakers is now showing the the Veg and Vines website.

Footnote: Whole Food Living will also be in attendance at this conference and will be post regular tweets and updates on the happenings.

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