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Medical students nutrition interest group

The post graduate Bachelor of Medicine / Bachelor of Surgery (BMBS) at Deakin has a growing number of burgeoning nutrition enthusiasts!

The Deakin University Medical Students Nutrition interest group (NutMed) was started in October 2014, after first year students attended a nutrition lecture given by Professor Caryl Nowson.

This generated a lot of enthusiasm, with year 1 and 2 students voicing that they were keen to incorporate more nutrition into their own learning.

The group nominated a student representative, who contacted all 272 first and second year students via social media asking them what topics on nutrition they would be keen to explore further.

These were collated and reviewed by the School of Exercise and Nutrition Sciences who then sourced experts who may be interested in presenting.

Dates and times were suggested by the contact medical student representative and the initial session was held in October 2014, the topic being “Weight Loss and Social media” (presented by Dr Tim Crowe, Deakin University).

The format was informal, with a loosely scripted question and answer session, light snacks provided and approximately 30 students in attendance.

Currently coordinated by Robyn Perlstein (Research Fellow and Accredited Practicing Dietitian (APD) from our School of Exercise and Nutrition Sciences, and Jess Pulley (Dietitian and second year Deakin medical student.

Topics that have been covered in the 4 sessions included paediatric nutrition in the community, Nutrition issues in Type 1 and 2 Diabetes and pregnancy and maternal weight gain.

Later this year planning is underway for a session based around clinical nutrition issues commonly seen in the acute setting.

Numbers attending have increased to around 40 in the sessions this year, with social media being the easiest way to maintain contact instigated by our enthusiastic champion medical student meaning that the staff time required is minimal.

It is encouraging to see that so many medical students are keen to learn how and what to incorporate into their client consultations and improve their own and their future patient’s nutritional status.

It is a terrific way to interact in a relaxed setting with students, enabling them to practically consider the holistic role nutrition has to play in medicine.

For more information contact Caryl Nowson

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