Dr Mikki Williden

Mikki Williden is a registered nutritionist with postgraduate degrees in nutrition and public health, and a physical education degree. She has a private nutrition clinic, an online nutrition coaching business and is a regular contributor to Bite Magazine in the NZ Herald, writes for Kiwi Trail Magazine and is a Research Associate  at AUT University, Auckland. In her downtime, she loves to run, on both roads and trails, drink coffee, listen to music and potter in the kitchen.

PRESENTATION: #plantbased: The Disconnect Between “Healthy” and Health

There is an increasing trend in the public health media for a plant-based diet that minimises animal protein for optimal health. This message sits alongside social media messages which suggest that in order to be healthy, to “eat clean”, and to be environmentally conscious, one should be removing red meat and dairy products from their diet.  Concurrent to this, New Zealand dietary data reveals sub-groups in the population struggling to meet recommended intakes of protein and micronutrients that play an essential role in growth, development and maintenance of muscle mass, most of which are most readily concentrated and bioavailable in animal protein.

Mikki will discuss the unintended consequences of the plant-based diet movement and how the message could be altered to reflect the theme of increasing plant-based foods while still protecting those most vulnerable to sub-optimal health.


  • Describe the prevalence of certain nutrient deficiencies in the NZ population
  • Describe the relationship between animal protein consumption and health