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Focus Group Member – Taking a Food First Approach to Managing Chronic Diseases

Posted • Last updated


Open to Provincial Region, Patient Partners across the province

Last updated

A new not-for-profit institute in BC is interested in receiving input from patient partners to help shape the programs and services they build in support of patients and their health care providers who choose a “food first” approach.

Open to: Patient Partners across the province

Lead Organization or Department

Institute for Personalized Therapeutic Nutrition (IPTN)


The goal of the Institute for Personalized Therapeutic Nutrition is to support and drive improvements to the way food is included in therapeutic interventions. At this stage, Patient Partners will provide feedback on awareness, beliefs and practices around choosing a food first approach.

Level of Engagement

This opportunity is at the level of consult on the spectrum of engagement ( The promise to you is that the health care partner will obtain patient feedback on draft recommendations and plans.


Open to PVN patient partners across the province who:
  • Are living with type 2 diabetes, pre-diabetes or other chronic disease
  • Have a spouse/partner who is living with type 2 diabetes, pre-diabetes, or other chronic disease
  • Have ever tried to lose weight or change eating habits to improve their health
  • Are comfortable telling their story;
  • Are open to meeting via Skype


  • Number: 10-12 patient partners
  • Date/Time: To be determined once patient advisors are confirmed
  • Commitment: One two-hour call
  • Location: Skype


No expenses will be incurred


The Institute for Personalized Therapeutic Nutrition (IPTN) is a new, not-for-profit institute whose vision is for a healthier society where people can safely choose a personalized, ‘food first’ approach to optimize their health, and prevent or reverse disease. Our mission is to act as a catalyst for advancing the scientific evidence base by conducting research, creating and promoting learning opportunities, and supporting evidence-based practice and policy change. When we use the term ‘food first’, we are talking about using food as a therapeutic intervention, much like we use medications. We know that many if not most of the world’s health belief systems outside of Western medicine use food therapeutically. We define therapeutic nutrition as, ‘an individually tailored nutritional intervention designed to manage or reverse patient specific metabolic dysfunctions, medical conditions or their associated symptoms’. A good example of a disease that results from metabolic dysfunction is type 2 diabetes.

Health Care Partner Contact Information

Jami Brown
Engagement Leader, Patient and Public Engagement | Fraser Valley

From Our Community

Derek Koch

Spiritual Health Practitioner and Patient- and Family-Centred Care Lead — Kelowna General Hospital

Derek Koch

The bottom line is because we’re caring for patients. People who know best are those who are receiving the care so it makes logical sense that we would consult with them about their experiences. By connecting with PVN we have been able to educate our teams about the value of patient partners and how important their perspective is in our services.