The IVU Department of Medicine and Nutrition aims to:
Provide materials showing the nutritional viability of vegetarian and vegan diet for people of all ages, from infants, teens, adults and old people, supported by indexed scientific literature.
Promote medical and nutritional conducts compatible with the vegetarian choice (of any type), offering security to the health professional and the population as a whole.
Director: Dr Eric Slywitch is a Medical Doctor, with a Master's and Doctorate in the area of nutrition, with the theme of metabolic evaluation of vegetarians and omnivores. He specializes in Nutrology, Enteral and Parenteral Nutrition. He has a postgraduate degree in Endocrinology, Clinical Nutrition and Psychoanalysis. He is the author of 3 books on vegetarianism in Brazil and has published several chapters on vegetarianism in the main technical books of nutrition in Brazil. He teaches in 3 postgraduate courses addressing the theme of vegetarianism and has his own teaching center for metabolic and nutritional evaluation with emphasis on interpreting laboratory tests for physicians and nutritionists.
He worked with Marly Winckler (then president) at the Brazilian Vegetarian Society (SVB) from 2004 to 2016 as Director of the Department of Medicine and Nutrition, developing technical materials for lay people and health professionals. Together with the Nutrition Council of the City of São Paulo, he developed a Vegetarian Diet Food Guide (published by SVB) giving the basis for the nutrition professionals to prescribe vegetarian food throughout Brazil.
Representing the SVB, he participated in the final elaboration of the Food Guide for the Brazilian Population, of the Brazilian Ministry of Health, inserting the healthy effect of vegetarianism and removing negative concepts related to this in this material. In the implementation of the campaign Meatless Monday, he actively participated in technical discussions with nutritionists, enabling the implementation of the campaign.
Dr Eric has been working in clinical practice since 2001. He has extensive experience in diagnosing and correcting nutritional deficiency in vegetarian and omnivorous individuals through food and supplementation. He acts in the training of health professionals (doctors and nutritionists), enabling them to read biochemical tests and nutritional intervention.
The IVU Vegan Nutrition Guide for Adults
The IVU Vegan Nutrition Guide for Adults was elaborated with the aim of serving as a comprehensive and free support material for health professionals worldwide, in its scientific version, and for the general population, in its version for lay people. It addresses the nutritional care we should have when adopting a strict vegetarian (vegan) diet safely, based on more than 700 studies indexed in the international scientific literature. It contains a Nutritional Table of each key nutrient in the diet, presenting the richest foods of each food group.
It addresses the bioavailability, physiology and biochemistry of these nutrients in the context of vegetarianism, besides showing what is in studies about them in the context of this food approach.
It also discusses supplementation and care in laboratory nutritional assessment. At its end it has more than 30 different menus, calculated according to its nutritional value (to demonstrate the safety of the diet), covering eating habits of the main continents.
The causal role of the large-scale confinement of animals in farming operations in the emergence of zoonotic diseases and antibiotic resistance is well-established. Livestock species now constitute more biomass than all wild mammals combined, harboring a larger number of zoonotic viruses than their wild relatives. Importantly, the ideal conditions for the emergence of highly pathogenic viruses are present in intensive animal farming systems. Additionally, over 70% of the antibiotics sold in the world are used in animals raised as a source of food, being intrinsically linked to the emergence of antimicrobial-resistant bacteria in the human population, one of the greatest existing threats to global health.
In recognizing that animal farming systems represent an unacceptable level of threat to public health, the Global Health Department of the International Vegetarian Union advocates for a transition towards safer methods of food production as a strategy at the core of protecting the well-being of current and future generations.
Director: Dr. Cynthia Schuck-Paim
Cynthia received her D.Phil. in Zoology from Oxford University. Her D.Phil was followed by two research fellowships (at Oxford and Brazil), as well as by various research projects for institutions in the UK, USA and Brazil. With over 60 scientific papers published in international journals (https://tinyurl.com/cschuckpaim), her research includes studies on the mortality impact of the 1918 and 2009 influenza pandemics, on the burden of respiratory infectious diseases, the evaluation of the impact of public health interventions using hospitalization data, the impact of the pneumococcal vaccine to reduce mortality in children, studies on animal behavior and a pioneer work on the environmental conditions favoring the evolution of advanced cognition. She has taught workshops on data analysis and scientific capacity building for many years and worked as a pro-bono researcher for various non-profit organizations. She currently investigates farm animal health and welfare. She is also a member of the IVU International Council.
The IVU Department of Policy aims to help and facilitate international best practice sharing on how to pave the way for plant-based political initiatives around the world – ranging from e.g. climate, agriculture and business policies to official dietary guidelines and municipal school meal programs.
Director: Rune-Christoffer Dragsdahl
Rune-Christoffer is a Danish anthropologist and an expert on the relationship between sustainability, climate change, agriculture and food.
Being a vegetarian since his birth, Rune-Christoffer was appointed in 2016 Secretary-General of the Vegetarian Society of Denmark. He is the European Representative of IVU.
1. International online platform for sharing best practices on veg policy work
This policy forum is for organizations from all over the world who are working seriously with, or who want to learn more about how to work seriously with, influencing politics. The forum is administered by the +Coordinator of Policy Initiatives at the International Vegetarian Union (IVU). It is supported by a grant from Animal Charity Evaluators (ACE) to the Vegetarian Society of Denmark, where the Coordinator of Policy at the IVU works.
IVU Liaison: Rune-Christofer
2. TVA-IVU C40 Project
The project aims to reach out to veg groups and organizations to support C40 cities - www.c40.org - in reducing animal food consumption. About 97 cities already signed this project. So "Given the importance of meat reduction as a climate change action, we're hoping we can start our outreach by getting city buy-in to start implementing Meatless Mondays in public places like schools."
C40 is a network of 96 of the world’s largest and most influential cities - representing 700+ million people and one quarter of the global economy - that have committed to halving their greenhouse gas emissions by 2030.
One of the five categories of initiatives that the C40 network focuses on to accomplish its emissions targets is food, waste and water. Last June, C40 released a statement indicating that sustainable diets by 2030 are key to solving the global climate emergency and that cities need to consume less meat and provide access to more fresh fruits and vegetables. As you’re aware, greater shifts to plant-based diets would have dramatic benefits for our environment, climate, health and the welfare of animals.
Covid-19 has affected all of our organizations. But, for all the challenges brought on by the pandemic, it has also created opportunities for our vegan movement: people are becoming more aware of the effect of animal agriculture on the world and are consuming more information online.
These C40 initiatives align well with the missions of the TVA and the IVU - two of the oldest vegan-friendly organizations - to inspire people to choose healthier, greener, and more compassionate lifestyles.
The Global Veg Network is a group of organization in C40 cities that are committed to the reduction of animal consumption and suffering and to the promotion and adoption of more plant-based foods in their cities.
Through the sharing resources, strategies and best practices, we can learn from each other, collaborate and work together to help our respective governments reach their C40 goals of reducing emissions by half by 2030.
This group was formed by the Toronto Vegetarian Association and the International Vegetarian Union. It is open-source and inclusive in nature and you are welcome to propose additional organizations in your cities join us, should they align with the aforementioned values and goals.
In addition to being a long-time volunteer and current president of the Toronto Veg Association, I am a plant-based nutrition economics researchers. I recently founded a NGO, Plant-Based Economics (www.plantbasedeconomics.com) and joined the research team at Plant-Based Data (www.plantbaseddata,org) I'm interested in accelerating the adoption of plant-based initiatives, like Meatless Monday, and in evaluating the impacts of population shifts towards more whole, plant-based foods.
IVU Liaison: Dilip Barman - North America IVU Representative
Emanuel Goldman, Greater New York City area, USA. "The Vegetarian Cinophile" (columns on selected films from a vegetarian perspective). Professor of Microbiology and Molecular Genetics at New Jersey Medical School. Vegetarian since 1964, vegan since 1992.