Archive: January 18 and 19, 2018

Sedona Health and Nutrition Conference

Medicine that Heals:  Incorporating Plant-Based Nutrition into Your Practice

Professional Presentations for Health Care Providers and the Community

Archive: January 18 and 19, 2018

L’Auberge de Sedona
301 L’Auberge Lane, Sedona, AZ 86336

Participants discovered how plant-based nutrition is changing the landscape of medical practice in the U.S.  (This annual conference is the first in Northern Arizona to present the latest information on the science and practice of “food as medicine”  – medicine that goes beyond managing chronic conditions to promote true healing.)  They learned the latest information on plant-based nutrition, the effects of diet on chronic disease prevention and control, and how to design an optimum plant-based diet for patients and clients in a clinical setting.

Interest in plant-based diets is rapidly growing. Practitioners are now successfully using this interest and information in a clinical setting to change the lives of their patients.

This conference, designed for healthcare professionals, offered up to 10.5 AMA PRA Category 1 Credits for many medical professionals, and 10.5 CPEUs from the Commission on Dietetic Registration for registered dietitians. Others with strong interest in nutrition and health also attended.

Conference Medical Director: Shipra Bansal, MD

Program Objectives                                                                        

Participants will be able to:

  1. Recognize the links between dietary choices and chronic diseases such as cancer, coronary heart disease, diabetes and obesity
  2. Understand the evidence-based research on nutrition and reversal of coronary artery disease
  3. Identify health-promoting foods and general approaches to nutrition that are most beneficial to patient health
  4. Describe a list of current resources to maintain up-to-date knowledge of nutritional medicine
  5. Describe the research outcomes from local, chronic disease prevention studies
  6. Distinguish specific approaches to incorporating nutritional interventions in medical practice

Disclosure: In the interest of complete disclosure, the speaker at this CME Activity and the committee involved in the planning of this activity signed a financial disclosure form and has no conflict of interest with any commercial entities or products that may have an interest in this program. Jay Sutliffe disclosed he has a grant from Nutritional Research Foundation. Wendy Wetzel disclosed she has a grant from Nutritional Research Foundation and is on the speaker’s bureau for Merck (Nexplanon Trainer). This was intended to make participants aware of the faculty’s interests, so they may form their own judgments about such materials.

This activity was planned and implemented in accordance with the accreditation requirements and policies of the Arizona Medical Association (ArMA) through the joint providership of Flagstaff Medical Center and Healthy World Sedona. The Flagstaff Medical Center is accredited by ArMA to provide continuing medical education for physicians.

The Flagstaff Medical Center designates this live activity for a maximum of 10.50 AMA PRA Category 1 Credits™. Physicians should only claim credit commensurate with the extent of their participation in the activity.

California Board of Registered Nursing # 10612

Healthy World Sedona is a 501(c)(3) non-profit and presents these and many other events throughout the year as a public service.  Your regular tax-deductable contributions and sponsorships are much appreciated (see the “Donations” link at the top of this page).

Program Agenda

Thursday, January 18
1:00 p.m. Registration
1:25 Introductory Remarks – Don Fries & Bev Bow, Healthy World Sedona
1:30 Eating for Life: The Nutritional Basis for Disease Prevention and Treatment, Part 1 – Shipra Bansal, M.D.
2:45 Break
3:00 Eating for Life: The Nutritional Basis for Disease Prevention and Treatment,, Part 2 – Shipra Bansal, M.D.
5:00 Adjourn
6:00-8:00 Optional Dinner and Dialogue: Putting Theory into Practice.

Enjoy a gourmet dinner prepared by L’Auberge Executive Chef Michael O’Dowd. Join in discussion with a panel of three primary care physicians who incorporate plant-based nutrition into their medical practice on a daily basis. Ask your questions about: how to engage patients in lifestyle change; approaches to reimbursement; fitting lifestyle coaching into the clinic schedule; and more.

Shipra Bansal, M.D., North Country Healthcare, Flagstaff, AZ

Ted Crawford, D.O., NW Allied Physicians, Tucson, AZ

Deanna Price, M.D., Yavapai Regional Medical Center, Prescott, AZ

(Dinner session purchase is in addition to conference registration fee)

Friday, January 19
8:00 a.m. Registration
8:25 Introductory Remarks – Don Fries & Bev Bow, Healthy World Sedona
8:30 Welcome & Introduction to Seminar – Shipra Bansal, M.D., Conference Medical Director
8:45 The Nutritional Reversal of Coronary Artery Disease: Fact or Fiction? – Caldwell Esselstyn, Jr., M.D.
10:15 Break
10:30 Whole Food Plant-Based Diets in the Prevention and Treatment of Disease – Brenda Davis, R.D.
12:00 p.m. Lunch
12:30 Lunch Presentation:   Taking it to the Streets – Northern Arizona University/Northern Arizona Healthcare Research Team – Jay Sutliffe, Ph.D., R.D.; Michelle Gorman, R.D.; Wendy Wetzel, R.N., M.S.N., F.N.P.
1:30 Putting Nutrition to Work in Clinical Practice – Michael Klaper, M.D.
3:00 Break
3:15 Benefits of a Plant-Based Diet Above and Below the Belt- Jane Esselstyn, R.N.
4:45 Summary Discussion – Shipra Bansal, M.D.
5:00 Adjourn

2018 Faculty

Caldwell Esselstyn Photo

Caldwell Esselstyn, Jr., M.D.

Caldwell B. Esselstyn, Jr., received his B.A. from Yale University and his M.D. from Western Reserve University. In 1956, pulling the No. 6 oar as a member of the victorious United States rowing team, he was awarded a gold medal at the Olympic Games. He was trained as a surgeon at the Cleveland Clinic and at St. George’s Hospital in London. In 1968, as an Army surgeon in Vietnam, he was awarded the Bronze Star.

Dr. Esselstyn has been associated with the Cleveland Clinic since 1968. During that time, he has served as President of the Staff and as a member of the Board of Governors. He chaired the Clinic’s Breast Cancer Task Force and headed its Section of Thyroid and Parathyroid Surgery. He is a Fellow of the American College of Cardiology.

His scientific publications number over 150. In 1995 he published his benchmark long-term nutritional research arresting and reversing coronary artery disease in severely ill patients. That same study was updated at 12 years and reviewed beyond twenty years in his book, Prevent and Reverse Heart Disease, making it one of the longest longitudinal studies of its type. In July of 2014 he reported the experience of 198 participants seriously ill with cardiovascular disease. During 3.7 years of follow up of the 89% adherent to the program, 99.4% avoided further major cardiac events.

Dr. Esselstyn and his wife, Ann Crile Esselstyn, have followed a plant-based diet since 1984. Dr. Esselstyn presently directs the cardiovascular prevention and reversal program at The Cleveland Clinic Wellness Institute.


Michael A. Klaper, M.D. is a graduate of the University of Illinois College of Medicine in Chicago and has practiced acute care medicine in Hawaii, Canada, California, Florida and New Zealand.

Far more fulfilling to him was his practice for the past nine years, at True North Health Center in Santa Rosa, California, focusing on health-promoting food and lifestyle choices to help people stay out of hospitals and off of operating tables. He has authored numerous articles on plant-based nutrition and is authoring a book on using plant-based medicine to arrest and reverse disease.

A long-time radio host and a pilot, Dr. Klaper has served as nutrition advisor to NASA’s programs for space colonists on the Moon and Mars and on the Nutrition Task Force of the American Medical Students Association.  To improve the health of his patients as well as his own, and to minimize suffering of sentient beings, Dr. Klaper adopted a plant-based diet in 1981.  In January 2018, he will leave 46 years of primary care practice and devote full-time efforts to creating courses for doctors on incorporating plant-based nutrition into their own practices, to writing a book on plant-based healing, lecturing in medical schools, teaching medical students, and producing webinars for the public on raising healthy children, optimizing athletic performance, and aging healthfully, among many other subjects.

He makes the latest information on health and nutrition available through his website,, where visitors can find the numerous videos and DVDs he has produced, as well subscribe to his free newsletter, “Medicine Capsule.”


Brenda Davis, R.D.

Brenda Davis, registered dietitian, is a leader in her field and an internationally acclaimed speaker. She has worked as a public health nutritionist, clinical nutrition specialist, nutrition consultant and academic nutrition instructor. Brenda is the lead dietitian in a diabetes research project in Majuro, Marshall Islands. She is a featured speaker at nutrition, medical, and health conferences throughout the world.

Brenda is co-author of nine award-winning, best-selling books – Becoming Vegan: Comprehensive Edition (2014), Becoming Vegan: Express Edition (2013), Becoming Vegan (2000), The New Becoming Vegetarian (2003), Becoming Vegetarian (1994, 1995), Becoming Raw (2010), the Raw Food Revolution Diet (2008), Defeating Diabetes (2003) and Dairy-free and Delicious (2001).  She is also a contributing author to a tenth book, The Complete Vegetarian (2009). Her books are vegetarian/vegan nutrition classics, with over 750,000 copies in print in 8 languages. Brenda has authored and co-authored several articles for peer-reviewed medical and nutrition journals and magazines.

Brenda is a past chair of the Vegetarian Nutrition Dietetic Practice Group of the American Dietetic Association. In 2007, she was inducted into the Vegetarian Hall of Fame. Brenda lives in Kelowna, British Columbia with her husband, Paul Davis.  She has two grown children, Leena Markatchev and Cory Davis.

Jane Esselstyn, R.N.JaneEsselstynPhoto

Jane Esselstyn R.N. is a fresh and charismatic voice on the whole food, plant-based diet. She brings her perspective and passion as a woman, nurse, researcher, and mother to creating on-ramps to the plant-based way of life. Jane is an avid and inventive designer of plant-based recipes and the co-author of The Prevent and Reverse Heart Disease Cookbook with her next door neighbor and mom, Ann. And she created the recipe section of #1 NYTimes bestseller, Plant-Strong, by her brother, Rip Esselstyn, as well as the recipes for The Seven Day Rescue, by Rip Esselstyn with recipes by Jane Esselstyn, available December 27th, 2016.

Jane has worked as a science, outdoor, and health educator for over 28 years, and more recently a researcher. The Journal of Pediatrics recently published the study she worked on with the Cleveland Clinic observing the effect of a plant-based diet on pediatric obesity and hypercholesterolemia.

When not working on recipes or research, Jane teaches Sexuality Education to middle schoolers. Many of the basic healthy messages around being a sexual being for middle school kids make their way into Jane’s adult presentations in hilarious and educational ways.

Jane met her husband and fellow plant-based  educator, Brian Hart, while working as a field instructor for Outward Bound. They have three plant-based children. Jane earned a B.S. in Nursing from Kent State University.

Shipra Bansal, M.D.ShipraBansalPhoto

Shipra Bansal, M.D., is a board-certified Family Physician at North Country HealthCare, a community health center in Flagstaff, Arizona.  In addition to patient care, she is a Regional Director of Medical Education with AT Still University School of Medicine in Arizona where she leads the second year student program.  She strongly believes we must bring nutrition to the forefront in medical education in order to improve the health of our communities.

Over the past 3 years Dr. Bansal has led a nutritional workshop series for patients interested in treating their chronic disease with diet.  The classes focus on making healthy eating available to a community health center based population.  Some prior participants have been able to shift to healthier eating while actually saving money!  She has had a lifelong passion for health and nutrition and feels fortunate to now be able to share this critical information with patients and students alike.

Dr. Bansal completed her residency in Family Medicine at Harbor-UCLA in 2008 and obtained her medical degree from New Jersey Medical School in 2005.


Northern Arizona University/Northern Arizona Healthcare Research Team: Jay Sutliffe, PhD, Michelle Gorman, RD, Wendy Wetzel, NP

Presenting research findings on the use of nutrient-dense, whole food plant-based nutrition to address cardiovascular health and overall quality of life.

Jay Sutliffe Ph.D., R.D. has been a member of the Northern Arizona University Health Sciences faculty since 2011. Prior to NAU copy, he taught at Chadron State College in Nebraska. His teaching and research interests are related to: disease prevention and reversal using non-invasive lifestyle practices, wellness across the lifespan, and lifestyle habits of college students.

In addition to his academic experience Jay has extensive experience in restaurant and health food store ownership/operation; years of experience in community and residentially-based health promotion programs; and broad experience working with athletes and those interested in wellness.  Jay earned his doctoral degree in Public Health from Walden University, his Master’s degree in Health Education from University of Nebraska, and his Bachelor’s degree in Food and Nutrition/Dietetics from North Dakota State University. Jay is a Registered Dietitian.

Michelle Gorman, R.D. currently works as a program manager, Lifepath and Wellness for Northern Arizona Healthcare.

Gorman has more than a decade of food science and nutrition experience.  Prior to her current position, she worked as a Senior Coordinator on the Performance Innovation Team at Exos, designing innovative wellness solutions in Human Performance for Elite Athletes, Military, Tactical and Corporate clients.  She also served as a Health Promotion Executive for Arizona’s largest Independent Health Insurance Company, providing 1.1 million members access to personal wellness programs.  In addition, she directed the nutrition communication program as the Corporate Dietitian for Albertsons and Fry’s Food Stores. She received her Plant-Based Nutrition Certification from eCornell and is passionate about sharing the benefits of a whole-food, plant-based diet.

Gorman earned a bachelor’s degree in food science nutrition from Northern Arizona University.

Wendy Wetzel, R.N., M.S.N., F.N.P. has served in a number of private group practice settings, and most recently as a Family Nurse Practitioner at the Northern Arizona University Student Health Center. Throughout her career she has been active in research, and has authored a number of publications. She was a lecturer and clinical preceptor in the Family Nurse Practitioner program at Sonoma State University, and an instructor in the California State University BSN program. Wendy earned her BSN in Nursing Degree from California State University and MSN, Family Nurse Practitioner Certificate from Sonoma State University.