Speaker will discuss how farming has a direct impact on our health

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August 28, 2017

Daphne MillerDaphne Miller will deliver the 2017 Norman L. Ford Science Literacy Lecture at 7:30 p.m. Tuesday, Sept. 26, in the Stephen B. Humphrey Theater, Saint John’s University.

Her lecture, “Farmacology: Total Health from the Ground Up,” is free and open to the public.

Miller is a practicing family physician and a renowned nutrition expert. She will take the audience beyond the simple concept of “food as medicine” and will introduce the critical idea that it’s the farm that offers us the real medicine.

By venturing out of her clinic and spending time on seven family farms, Miller uncovers all the aspects of farming – from seed choice to soil management – that have a direct and powerful impact on our health.

Bridging the traditional divide between agriculture and medicine, Miller shares lessons learned from inspiring farmers and biomedical researchers and weaves their insights and discoveries, along with stories from her patients, into the narrative.

The result is a compelling new vision for sustainable healing and a treasure trove of farm-to-body lessons that have immense value in our lives.

Miller is an internationally recognized speaker in the emerging field of planetary health, and a leader in the “Healthy Parks, Healthy People” initiative, an effort spearheaded by the National Parks Service to build linkages between the medical and park systems.

Her 2009 Washington Post newspaper article, “Take a Hike and Call Me in the Morning,” is widely credited with introducing “park prescriptions,” a concept that is rapidly gaining traction across the country.

Miller is a graduate of Brown University, where she majored in medical anthropology. She received her medical degree from Harvard Medical School, and completed a residency and National Institutes of Health-funded research fellowship at the University of California, San Francisco (UCSF).

She is an associate clinical professor at UCSF, and has written two books: “Farmacology: Total Health from the Ground Up” (HarperCollins, 2013) and “The Jungle Effect: The Healthiest Diets from Around the World, Why They Work and How to Make Them Work for You” (HarperCollins, 2008).

Following the lecture, Miller will be available to sign copies of her books.

In advance of Miller’s presentation, two showings of the documentary “In Search of Balance,” which is based on her book “Farmacology,” will be shown. Those screenings take place at 7 p.m. Monday, Sept. 11, in room 204, Gorecki Center, College of Saint Benedict, and 7 p.m. Monday, Sept. 18 in Pellegrene Auditorium, SJU.

The Ford Lecture Series addresses contemporary and cutting-edge scientific topics while encouraging students and the public to become more conversant with the relevance of science in our everyday lives.

The series is made possible through the generous support of a Saint John's alumnus who wanted to honor Norman Ford, professor emeritus of biology at the College of Saint Benedict and SJU, who was one of his favorite and most inspiring professors.