Please share the HCC News Roundup with your colleagues, friends and wider network
Healthy Caribbean Coalition

July 22nd, 2019


Caribbean Foodscape Project - Understanding the Past to Enhance Healthy Eating in the Future

Participants at the Caribbean Foodscapes Project
Participants at the Caribbean Foodscapes Project second stakeholder workshop
HCC board member, Dr. Carlene Radix represented the Healthy Caribbean Coalition at the Caribbean Foodscapes Project second stakeholder workshop which took place at the UWI Regional Headquarters on Wednesday July 10th 2019.  Other invited stakeholders included partners such as the Caribbean Historical Research Unit of the UWI Mona Department of History and Archaeology, the Caribbean Institute for Health Research, Mona GeoInformatics Institute, National Environment and Planning Agency, Caribbean Public Health Agency, National Health Fund, and the National Museum of Jamaica.  The aim of the workshop was to validate and co-analyse the preliminary findings and to help to shape the final output of the project.

This unique interdisciplinary project is funded by the Medical Research Council -Arts and Humanities Research Council - Global Public Health Partnership Award Scheme (MR/R024324/1). The Caribbean Foodscapes project merges history and health studies to examine the relationship between historical events, health trends and the changing foodscapes in Kingston, Jamaica during the period from 1945 (post World War II) to present day. Foodscapes include the places where food is prepared, acquired, consumed and talked about. The project uses foodscapes as a tool to understand how people, spaces and food interact and how this interaction influences our food behaviour.  Among the products of the project is a set of maps showing the changing food outlets in the capital city over time. These maps were prepared in collaboration with Mona GIS.
Dr. Carlene Radix (second left) at the Caribbean Foodscapes Project
HCC representative, Dr. Carlene Radix (second left) at the Caribbean Foodscapes Project second stakeholder workshop
Project researchers highlighted the preliminary findings and suggested reasons for them. Among the historical events that may have contributed to the evolution of multiple foodscapes in Kingston include, changing public health laws, hurricanes and other natural disasters, economic shocks, manufacturing and industry, structural adjustment policies, changes in marketing and advertising practices, changing gender roles, and the globalization of trade. The project’s initial findings confirm the wider availability of unhealthy food options in the city since independence in 1962, increasing rates of overweight and obesity over time, especially in children under five, and the increasing burden of noncommunicable diseases such as diabetes and hypertension.

Project leads Dr. Cornelia Guell (European Centre for Environment and Human Health, University of Exeter Medical School) and Dr. Ishtar Govia (Caribbean Institute for Health Research, UWI), hope that this project’s findings will add to the body of evidence for advocacy for built, social and working environments that promote healthy eating. Caribbean Foodscapes can inform the work of urban planners and public health officials to restrict unhealthy food environments and increase availability of healthy options.

The next steps include to visualise our findings in digital maps in collaboration with MonaGeoinformatics that will be made available in due course, for further information please visit the Caribbean Foodscapes Project website or contact Dr. Cornelia Guell at
Caribbean Foodscapes Project: Learning from History for Future Healthy Eating
Caribbean Foodscapes Project: Learning from History for Future Healthy Eating
HCC is looking for you


Improving the School Food Environment Through Policy

A Case Study of Challenges and Recommendations From Mexico
Improving the School Food Environment Through Policy
This article is taken from UNSCN Nutrition 44 - Food environments: Where people meet the food system and written by Marisa Macari, Liliana Bahena, Fátima Torres, Rebecca Berner, Alejandro Calvillo of El Poder del Consumidor (The Power of the Consumer), Mexico.

An effective school food policy is an important tool in promoting healthy, diverse and sustainable diets and can contribute to obesity and chronic disease prevention and help eliminate all forms of malnutrition. This article reviews the topical literature to date and makes policy recommendations aimed at fostering healthy school food environments. These recommendations are based on an exploratory study charting the food environment in Mexican state primary schools and exploring the obstacles to implementing the country’s federal school food regulation.

This article argues that school food policy needs to be based in a human rights framework, with particular attention to the Rights of the Child, the Right to Adequate Food and Nutrition and the Right to Water. It emphasizes how policy needs to take into account the economic and structural realities of schools to be effective, for example, the funding constraints facing schools and school food vendors.
Read article
Vital Talks from Vital Strategies: Alejandro Calvillo Unna, founder and director of Mexico’s El Poder del Consumidor (The Power of the Consumer) discussed how Mexico, where more than 70% of the population is overweight or obese, defied the powerful beverage industry and succeeded in passing a soda tax that has successfully reduced consumption. The event was moderated by Paula Johns, co-founder and director of ACT Health Promotion, Brazil, and a leading public health activist. Brazil is also deeply engaged in efforts to promote healthier food and to reduce obesity.
Vital Talks from Vital Strategies

Virtual Course on the Implementation of the HEARTS Technical Package in Primary Health Care

Tuesday July 23, 2019 at 11am EDT
Virtual Course on the Implementation of the HEARTS Technical Package in Primary Health Care
You are invited to participate in the launch of the virtual course on the implementation of the HEARTS technical package in Primary Health Care on Tuesday July 23, 2019 at 11am EDT (Check here to check the corresponding time in your area) hosted by PAHO.

Links to the virtual room (the room will be active 30 minutes before the webinar): English / Spanish

Some of the international experts who have participated in the development of the course will present the different components of the HEARTS technical package to improve hypertension control and to talk about the training of primary care personnel and the role of scientific societies and universities.

Participants will be able to learn about the structure and dynamics of the course, as well as how to enroll.
Read more

Call for Abstracts Caribbean Congress on Adolescent and Youth Health

Deadline for submission extended to Wednesday July 31st
Call for Abstracts Caribbean Congress on Adolescent and Youth Health
A consortium of Caribbean and regional partners is organising a regional Congress to mobilise greater investment for the promotion and protection of the health and well-being of all adolescents and young people in the Caribbean. This Congress, the first of its kind in the Caribbean, will be a launchpad from which advocates, health and social workers, policy-makers, academia, clinicians and young people themselves can heed the call towards improving their health and well-being for the future development of the region. The overarching theme of the Congress is: "Protecting our Future by Promoting the Health and Well-being of Adolescents and Youth in the Caribbean", you are invited to submit an abstract on the following topics for oral or poster presentation, the deadline for submission is Friday July 12th.
  • Track 1 Mental Health, Substance Use, Violence and Injuries
  • Track 2 Sexual and Reproductive Health and Rights, HIV and STIs
  • Track 3 Nutrition, Physical Activity, Sport and Youth Development
  • Track 4 Climate Change and the Environment 
Read more

Bermuda Health Council Launch ‘Fresh Food Fridays’

Bermuda Health Council Launch ‘Fresh Food Fridays’
(Photo: congerdesign/Pixabay)
Bernews24: The Bermuda Health Council will be launching “Fresh Food Fridays”, which will be a ”pop-up event for the public to come out, collect free healthy foods.”

A spokesperson said, “The Health Council has launched “Fresh Food Fridays”. This initiative is part of ongoing efforts to support population health and increase the health system’s focus on prevention. Fresh Food Fridays is a regular pop-up event for the public to come out, collect free healthy foods and engage with the Council on how we can best work to create sustainable solutions for our communities.

We are committed to improving access to goods and services that positively impact the health of the population. We understand the social determinants and health risks that end in chronic illness and life changing health events.
Read more
Related Media:

Lecturer Makes Case for National Workplace Wellness Policy

Dr. Dwayne Devonish
Antigua Daily Observer: During a presentation to address wellness in the workplace, Dr. Dwayne Devonish - a lecturer at the University of the West Indies (UWI) Cave Hill campus - made the point that although the Caribbean has various pieces of legislation to deal with health and wellness, there is “no guidance to employers”.
His remark was made during a lecture hosted by the UWI Open Campus entitled: “Lesson Learnt from the National Workplace Wellness Policy of Barbados: Making the Case for Antigua and Barbuda.”

“All of these acts and legislation, all they did was put unnecessary burden on employers and oftentimes employers tried their best to elude or evade the legal requirements. And that is the problem with legislation … it only provides requirements on employers but doesn’t provide guidance,”
Dr. Devonish said.
Read more

The Diabetes Association of Barbados’ Camp Pride

The Diabetes Association of Barbados’ Camp Pride
Accounts Assistant with the Barbados Workers’ Union (BWU)Co-operative Credit Union Limited, Kristina Browne speaking to the senior campers of Camp Pride 2019 about being financially savvy (Photo: Barbados Advocate website)
Barbados Advocate: The Diabetes Association of Barbados’ Camp Pride (Positive Reinforced Innovative Diabetes Education) has seen success over the 17 years it has been held.

This year the Camp runs from July 15 to 27 at the Springer Memorial Secondary School. In attendance are 21 campers; of those 18 are living with diabetes while the other three are siblings. The theme on this occasion is “Keys to Success” and some of the topics being covered include conflict resolution and how to be financially savvy. There is also a focus on the environment and ways to preserve it.

Director, Sandie Belle told The Barbados Advocate the two-week Camp has played a role in equipping campers yearly with skills needed to effectively manage their condition as well as lead successful lives.
Read more

New Report Warns of Obesity Epidemic in the Caribbean & Latin America

New Report Warns of Obesity Epidemic in the Caribbean & Latin America
The OECD and FAO call obesity an "epidemic" in Latin America and the Caribbean
(Photo: St Lucia Times)
St Lucia Times: Latin America and the Caribbean is facing an obesity epidemic while paradoxically the number of people facing food insecurity in the region continues to rise, the OECD and FAO warned in a recent report.

“In Latin America and the Caribbean … obesity currently affects around one quarter of the population, while about 60 percent of the population is overweight,” the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development and the UN’s Food and Agricultural Organization said in a joint report.

It called the rapid development in the number of people who are overweight and obese an “epidemic” and a “growing public health problem”.
Read more
Related Media:

Latin America’s War on Obesity Could Be Model for U.S.

Latin America’s War on Obesity Could Be Model for U.S.
Roasted Sweet Potatoes With Sour Cream and Toasted Pumpkin Seeds
(Photo: Deb Lindsey for The Washington Post)
Washington Post via News India: There is something Chilean kids won’t see anymore. As of June 27, cinemas and televisions no longer screen advertisements for foods high in calories, added sugar, sodium and saturated fat between 6 a.m. and 10 p.m., under new laws aimed at reducing childhood obesity in Chile.

It is one of the most recent efforts in the campaign against obesity that Latin American countries have been fully engaged with - and winning - for some time.

One country and one strategy at a time, the region has pushed back against sugary beverages and ultra-processed foods in an effort to escape the obesity epidemic that has overtaken the United States. 
Read more

HCC Eight UHC Advocacy Priorities - Social Media Graphics

HCC’s UHC advocacy priorities #1
HCC’s UHC advocacy priorities #2
HCC’s UHC advocacy priorities #3
HCC’s UHC advocacy priorities #4
In recognition of the HLM-UHC and the nexus between NCDs and UHC, HCC asked CARICOM Heads of Government and State to support HCC’s eight (8) UHC advocacy priorities as detailed in the First United Nations High-Level Meeting on Universal Health Coverage – Technical Brief for CARICOM Countries: A Contribution from Civil Society for inclusion in the HLM-UHC outcome document. We have produced some social media graphics to support this campaign in the lead up to the UN High-Level Meeting on Universal Health Coverage (HLM-UHC), on 23 September 2019. The graphics can be downloaded here.
HCC’s UHC advocacy priorities #5
HCC’s UHC advocacy priorities #6
HCC’s UHC advocacy priorities #7
HCC’s UHC advocacy priorities #8
We have also created social media graphics to campaign for the implementation of our Childhood Obesity Prevention Policies. The graphics can be downloaded here.
Childhood Obesity Prevention policies
Childhood Obesity Prevention policies
We encourage you to use these graphics to help raise awareness of both campaigns.

Cutting Just 300 Calories a Day Can Significantly Benefit Your Health

(Photo: Shutterstock)
Cutting out the calorie equivalent of a bagel, slice of pizza, side of fries or six Oreo cookies a day can pay off for your heart health and your waistline.

Adults who cut out 300 calories per day could improve cholesterol, blood pressure, blood sugar and other cardiovascular-related ailments, a new study published in the peer-reviewed “Lancet Diabetes & Endocrinology” journal found.
Read more
Related Media:

WHO/Europe Studies Find Baby Foods Are High in Sugar and Inappropriately Marketed for Babies

(Photo: yalehealth/Pixabay)
Two new studies from WHO/Europe show that a high proportion of baby foods are incorrectly marketed as suitable for infants under the age of 6 months, and that many of those foods contain inappropriately high levels of sugar.

WHO’s long-standing recommendation states that children should be breastfed, exclusively, for the first 6 months. Its 2016 global Guidance on Ending the Inappropriate Promotion of Foods for Infants and Young Children explicitly states that commercial complementary foods should not be advertised for infants under 6 months of age.

A French manufactured Creamed Porridge, contains 9.4g of sugar in a standard 24g serving. A standard 30g serving of Coco Pops only contains 5.1g of sugar. A Rusk manufactured by a well known company, contains 4.9g of sugar in each 17g rusk and are promoted for four-month-old babies.

These added flavours and sugars could affect the development of children’s taste preferences by increasing their liking for sweeter foods.
Read more
Related Media:

Food System Needs a Revolution, Not Tinkering Around Edges by the Ultra-Processed Producers

Food System Needs a Revolution
(Photo: Altagracia Art/
The Conversation: Eating ultra-processed food is definitely bad for you, a recent study has confirmed. In the experiment, people were fed either ultra-processed or unprocessed food, with meals matched precisely for calories, salt, sugar, fat and fibre. Those on ultra-processed food ate more and gained more weight within two weeks.

This finding puts two torpedoes in the notion that “all calories are the same”. Recent studies have linked ultra-processed foods to obesity, cancer, heart disease and early death.

Most foods need some level of processing, such as freezing or pasteurisation in order to prolong shelf life, food safety and commercial viability, but “ultra-processed” products have little or no intact “food” remaining. 
Read more

New Study Published Suggests Sugary Drink Consumption Linked With Increased Cancer Risk

BMJ Report Suggests Sugary Drink Consumption Linked With Increased Cancer Risk
(Photo: rawpixel/Pixabay)
Sugar-sweetened beverages, have long been associated with an increased risk of obesity, type 2 diabetes, high blood pressure, and death from heart disease. New research published in the British Medical Journal provides compelling evidence that these beverages, along with 100 percent fruit juice (which contains natural sugars), may raise the risk of cancer.

To investigate the effect sugary beverages have on health, they followed more than 100,000 people for five years, looking at the consumption of fruit juice, soft drinks, sweetened milkshakes, energy drinks and tea or coffee with sugar stirred in. Sugary drinks were defined as drinks with more than 5% sugar. 

The findings linked drinking just a small glass of a sugary drink per day - 100 ml, to an 18% increase in overall cancer risk and a 22% increase in risk for breast cancer.

Researchers from the Universite Sorbonne Paris Cite hypothesise that the link stems from sugary drinks causing high blood glucose levels, but cannot state definitive proof and have called for more research into the link.
Read more
Related Media:

LINKS Webinar: Blood Pressure Device Selection in Low- and Middle-Income Countries

LINKS: The next LINKS webinar, “Blood Pressure Device Selection in Low- and Middle-Income Countries” will be presented by Dr. Raj Padwal on Thursday, July 25th, 2019 from 9:00am - 10:00am EDT. 

Dr. Padwal is a professor in the Division of Internal Medicine and the Director of the Hypertension Dyslipidemia Clinic at the University of Alberta in Edmonton, Canada and past Chair of the Hypertension Canada Clinical Practice Guidelines.
You may register for the webinar via the LINKS Member Portal on the Events & Opportunities page. LINKS membership is free, but required to participate in the webinar. To join the LINKS community, please visit the Become a Member page.  Recordings of previous webinars are available to the public here.

Trans Fat Free by 2023 Report

Trans Fat Free by 2023 Report
NCD Alliance: This report presents case studies of six countries in different regions of the world that have enacted policies to eliminate industrially-produced trans fatty acids/trans fat (TFA) from their food supply.  The purpose of this report is to provide civil society organizations (CSOs) and policy-makers around the world with examples of successful strategies for enacting and implementing TFA policies.  The report also provides best practices, lessons learned, and recommendations based on the experience of policy-makers, advocates, and researchers involved in such efforts.
Available in both English and Spanish.

ECHORN/Yale-TCC Webinar: Climate Change Impacts as Determinants of Health in an NCD-Burdened Caribbean

Climate Change Impacts as Determinants of Health in an NCD-Burdened Caribbean.
A webinar entitled 'Climate Change Impacts as Determinants of Health in an NCD-Burdened Caribbean' wil take place on Thursday, August 29th, 1pm - 2pm EST / AST. it will be presented by Dr. LaVerne E. Ragster, President Emirata of the University of the Virgin Islands and Yale-TCC Consortium Governing Board Co-Chair. See flyer here.
Childhood Obesity Prevention Scorecard
NCD Alliance


In this edition:
  • 8 weeks until the 2nd Global Week for Action on NCDs - Join in!
  • Blog - Young people at the helm of action on NCDs
  • Share your films about cancer control with health experts 
  • How to harness social media to strengthen NCD advocacy
  • Join the launch of the new Lancet Series on oral health
  • Special issue of the HEJ on lifelong wellbeing
  • Join UICC and WCRFI's webinar on diet and cancer
  • Programme Manager - Global NCD Alliance Forum
  • Senior Event Manager - Global NCD Alliance Forum
Read more

Please Help to Monitor the Health of Caribbean Schools

My Healthy Caribbean School (MHCS) is an initiative of the HCC which provides students, teachers and parents with the opportunity to monitor the school environment with a focus on nutrition and physical activity.
Find out more

Key Messages From Our Publications

HCC Advocacy Priorities for the HLM-UHC 2019
Read more
Forthcoming Events


World Heart Day 2019

World Heart Day 2019 Is Now Officially Live!
Read more
Our Publications
First United Nations High-Level Meeting on Universal Health Coverage
First United Nations High-Level Meeting on Universal Health Coverage: Technical Brief for CARICOM Countries - A Contribution from Civil Society
Read more
CTA Beyond the Call to Action
CTA Beyond the Call to Action -  Towards School Policies in Support of Childhood Obesity Prevention
Read more
See All HCC Publications
HCC Facebook Group
Join the Group
Be HCC Social
Please Follow Us and Our Members on Social Media
If you want to share your organisations social media details in our roundup please let us know
We value the protection and confidentiality of your personal data and we are committed to respecting your privacy. We therefore comply with the applicable data privacy legislation in relation to processing personal data. Our Privacy Policy.

You are receiving this email because you have previously expressed an interest in our work. If you no longer wish to receive information from us, please unsubscribe or you can always update your preferences at any time.
HCC News Roundup Archive - If you have missed any of our News Roundups you can view previous Roundups on our News Roundup Archive webpage here.
The HCC is a regional network of Caribbean health NGOs and civil society organizations with the remit to combat chronic diseases (NCDs) and their associated risk factors and conditions. Our membership presently consists of more than 65 Caribbean-based health NGOs and over 55 not-for-profit organisations and, in excess of 200 individual members based in the Caribbean and across the globe.

To join the HCC email us at
The work of HCC would not be possible without core funding from Sagicor Life Inc
Sagicor Life Inc.
The HCC promote the work of civil society throughout the Caribbean in a variety of ways including sharing of their materials, this is not an endorsement of their materials or messages. The information contained in this newsletter is for general information purposes only, we endeavour to keep the information up to date and correct but any reliance you place on such information is strictly at your own risk. Through this newsletter you are able to link to other websites which are not under the control of the HCC. We have no control over the nature, content and availability of those sites. The inclusion of any links does not necessarily imply a recommendation or endorse the views expressed within them.
Copyright © 2019 Healthy Caribbean Coalition, All rights reserved.

unsubscribe from this list    update subscription preferences 

Email Marketing Powered by Mailchimp