The Society of Metabolic Health Practitioners (SMHP) earlier this month presented Adele Hite, PhD, MPH, RD, with the SMHP Achievement Award “in recognition of her unprecedented contribution in the quest to have therapeutic carbohydrate reduction recognized as standard of care.”
Adele, who is a senior writer for Diet Doctor, is the first recipient of an SMHP Achievement Award.
“Adele is passionate and dedicated to the science of therapeutic carbohydrate restriction and she has a superb knack of getting consensus among different practitioners working in this space,” said Robert Cywes, MD, PhD, who is a member of the SMHP Board of Directors. “She has a big picture futuristic perspective and has been instrumental in obtaining enough consensus around her ideas to launch the SMHP. She is a team builder that is vital to our ever increasing voice.”
The SMHP is a non-profit that represents researchers and practitioners working to improve metabolic health around the world through education, training, and support of evidence-based nutritional approaches, including carbohydrate reduction, as a valid therapeutic option or intervention. The organization launched in December 2020.
Adele led the effort to create Clinical Guidelines for Therapeutic Carbohydrate Reduction, which were announced and formally published on the LowCarbUSA® site in May, 2019. The Guidelines have been embraced by the low carb medical community ever since. Management of the Guidelines was taken over by the SMHP shortly after its launch.
As Adele explained during an SMHP interview in 2020, the expectation is that these guidelines will serve to bring practitioners together and lead to establishing Standard of Care around carbohydrate reduction.
“The work Adele has done to create the Clinical Guidelines has been nothing short of remarkable,” said Doug Reynolds, president and founder of the SMHP. “These Guidelines, which are the result of her vision and determination, are a framework that provide practitioners with the confidence that a low carbohydrate diet can be a legitimate therapeutic intervention for a variety of chronic medical conditions.”
“The idea of standard of care is important,” said Adele, who is careful to point out the differences between Standard of Care and guidelines.
“Standard of Care is not a guidelines document, which is what I had thought it was, and what most of us all think it is. That’s not actually how Standard of Care works. Legally, Standard of Care is how a professional group with the same background and education practices their profession, for a particular specific population. What they actually do in practice.”
“So for us, that might be family practitioners who have taken the SMHP courses and have become accredited as a metabolic health provider who treats people who have diabetes or prediabetes a certain way. And that establishes Standard of Care.”
In an article published last year on the SMHP site, Adele explained Why ‘Therapeutic Carbohydrate Reduction May Communicate the Message Better than ‘Keto’ or ‘Low Carb’.
Adele’s work on creating the Clinical Guidelines had its start during a phone meeting she had in June 2015 with a few other people interested in low carb, including author/journalist Gary Taubes, Rodney Cartocci and Dave Weed, PsyD. That led to the formation of the international Board of Advisors, a live forum discussion led by Adele, and an innovative process created by Adele, that allowed the community to contribute in real time with comments, and discussion points, in the development of the Clinical Guidelines document.
Adele has frequently said that this document isn’t “our document”. It is “YOUR document,” meaning that these guidelines are for everyone, contributed to by everyone, (a large community of practicing clinicians and scientists). It is a working document for clinicians to use in the prescription of therapeutic carbohydrate reduction as an intervention. It includes treatment protocols, de-prescribing procedures, and also a history of nutritional recommendations, and many references.
The SMHP encourages the public to print out the Clinical Guidelines and share the document with their practitioner so they can have a better understanding of the potential value of therapeutic carbohydrate reduction for a wide range of medical conditions.
The expectation is that the guidelines will continue to be refined, and work is now underway to create condition-specific addenda that will provide practitioners with protocols for type 2 diabetes and other conditions such as cardiovascular disease, neurological disorders, and other chronic diseases.