Annemarie speaker at first SCI conference Ireland

On april 21st our AM Lifestyle Medicine Center-founder and ambassador: sedentary lifestyle expert and nutritionist Annemarie de Vries-Postma (a.k.a. ‘The Sitting Chef’) , was in Dublin in Ireland to speak at the My Life: Well Being Conference 2018. This was the first ever patient centered conference for people living with spinal cord injuries in Ireland; an initiative of Spinal Injuries Ireland, supported by Coloplast UK.

Annemarie: “Health doesn’t come easy to people with spinal cord injury.

Annemarie spoke about SCI, secondary complications in SCI & nutrition, The Sit Smart Diet, why a whole foods plant based Diet is proven to be the healthiest and even superior diet for wheelchair users, and – how could it be otherwise – her modelling career (as Europes first professional wheelchairmodel) and Playboy photoshoot back in the 90’s. Her visit did not go unnoticed (-;  She appeared on The Six O Clock Show on TV3 and in The Irish Daily Mirror and The Dublin Gazette.

Well received

Annemarie’s talk was very well received. “This is very innovative”, said CEO of Spinal Injuries Ireland, Fiona Bolger. “Having SCI comes with a lot of serious secondary health complications – like obesity, diabetes type 2 and cardiovascular disease. It’s of great value that Annemarie shares her great knowdlegde of health and nutrition and raises awareness about the enormous power of food when it comes to succesful chronic disease prevention and treatment. The fact that she also speaks from years of own experience (she’s in a wheelchair for over 38 years now), makes her message particularly powerful. She is living proof of what healthy food can do for people with SCI”.

Health risks of having SCI

Annemarie: “Health doesn’t come easy to us and healty ageing with SCI is very difficult. Spinal cord injury is one of the most complex conditions, because it affects so many body systems and leads to many complications. One of them is an accumulation of metabolic disorders, due the fact that our legs don’t work anymore and to the decline of muscle mass. The result is: high bloodsugar (frequent bloodsugar spikes after dinner) and high insuline levels. This leads to weight gain and the inability to lose weight. But also to chronic inflammation, insulin resistence, poorly healing wounds, depression, hardening of the arteries and acceletared ageing. Having SCI is hard work. And it gets harder as we live with SCI longer and get older”.

The Sit Smart Diet

During her lecture Annemarie explained why having SCI requires “smart” dietary choices, and why she created the ultimate eating plan for wheelchair users: The Sit Smart Diet. Annemarie: “I find it extremely tragic that my populations health is often failing so badly, how most of us suffer from a complexity of secondary complications that in fact, in most cases, can be prevented, well treated or even reversed with decisive food- and nutrition intervention. The Sit Smart Diet is evidence-based and is the first dietplan for people with SCI. It is a low glycemic, low insulinemic, whole plant based diet – which means keeping animal food (meat, fish, dairy, eggs) to 10% or less of your calories. It’s the lifesaving plan for health and longevity for people with SCI”.

I find it extremely tragic that my populations health is often failing so badly.

The key is in your hands

Annemarie concluded by urging the audience not to give up on their dreams and encouraging to take more responsiblity for their own health. Annemarie: “Love yourself and take care f yourself. Time is over to rely on others for your health. Take the initiative. Do not accept another injection and another ailment each year. It’s time to take control of your health and start your new life today. The key is in your hands – better said: on your plate!

Funtimes – The Six O clock Show TV3. Annemarie: “Irish people are great craic!”