Plant based food is key to NCDs fight, says experienced Dietitian.

Ili becomes LMA champion, advocates for whole food plant based.

Ilisabeta Sili, 43, has been working as a Dietitian for the past 21 years. A health professional who is an expert in nutrition and the human diet, Ilisabeta’s work blends scientific research, nutrition, behavioral science, and social science to promote health, prevent disease, and shape the dietary choices of healthy and sick people.

Today, she has become a passionate advocate for ADRA’s Live More Abundantly (LMA) program and is promoting whole food plant based as the key to fighting non-communicable diseases (NCDs) for Fiji.

The LMA program is a lifestyle intervention developed by ADRA to work closely with vitality workers and field experts to bring about transformative change in people’s lives through better health.

Since its inception in Fiji 5 years ago, ADRA Fiji has been working closely with the Ministry of Health and community health workers advocating that through the LMA program, individuals can prevent, stop, and reverse non-communicable diseases and enjoy a healthy life.

In August, Ilisabeta was amongst 20 dietitians from around the country gathered for the LMA Training of the Trainers conducted by ADRA Fiji where they were introduced to the program to complement the work they have been carrying out in hospitals and health centers in Fiji.

“Volunteering to attend the LMA Training became the turning point in my life. Being a Dietitian for the past 21years, I have never learnt so much science about Food and lifestyle and their effect on general health. All the new information learnt, backed with science and evidence, inspired me to test the LMA fundamentals,” Ilisabeta said.

Unlike others, she tried it first before reaching out to implement this program in her area of service.

“Immediately after the 1week training, I attempted the 5days Jumpstart (12th – 16th August) and I aced it. The benefits that I experienced in these 5days of “Simple eating” was all the motivation that I needed to change my lifestyle for the better.”

A 7-week program with an ultimate focus of changing your habits and lifestyle for the better, Ilisabeta has surely achieved the project aim of making a complete transformation.

After 11 weeks, she said she had turned into a better, healthier version of herself. Some of small achievements she highlighted are as follows:

  • Lost 7kg of weight from 100kg to 93 kg
  • Lost tummy fat (100cm -94cm) now had to stitch her skirts to make the waist smaller.
  • Reduced T-Shirts size from XL to Large.
  • Broke her food addiction. Stopped taking Full Cream Milk Powder, meat and 90-95% processed foods. She only takes fish and Whole Food Plant Based dishes.
  • CBG and blood pressure (BP) reading are normal.
  • She sleeps early and wakes up early. She can now make roti for lunch.
  •  She made a lot of healthy changes in her family’s meals e.g. less oil, vegetables and fruits daily. Stopped preparing sausages and chicken giblets for her children’s school lunches.

Ilisabeta has revealed that the LMA program has also renewed her passion for her work. She said the raining made her realise that there is a need to incorporate new ideas to the current counselling or program.

“I am convinced now that WFPB diet has the key to fighting NCD for our Nation.”

She now has a mission and that is to spread this truth firstly to her work colleagues and then to the greater public.

“Thanks to LMA, I am a transformed person now and I have become a passionate advocate for LMA & WFPB. The healthy journey is Ongoing. There is No Turning back for me.”

“Vinaka ADRA.”

Fact File:

  • The LMA program is an education program based on the lifestyle medicine concepts focusing on healthy foods, being active, getting enough sleep, having healthy relationships for stress management etc. to combat NCDs in Fiji especially the increasing rates of diabetes.
  • It is part of the Fiji Circular Economy for Healthy Lifestyle (FCHEL) Project funded by ADRA Australia.
  • It champions healthy diet,