Four schools receive 2013 Healthy Heart Awards from Mediterranean Diet researcher

The 2013 Healthy Heart Awards have been awarded to Chevening CE Primary School in Kent, Corpus Christi Catholic Primary School in Lambeth, Dulwich Hamlet Junior School in Southwark, and St Nicholas CE Primary School in Chislehurst.

2013 Healthy Heart Awards

The Awards were presented in London on Thursday 5th December 2013 by Mediterranean diet researcher Professor Ramón Estruch from Barcelona.

The aim of the ‘Healthy Heart Awards‘ is to engage young and older school and college students in the health of their hearts. Entries included a short video, artwork, games, and poems about how to keep the heart healthy. At the Awards, the winning poetry entries were read by Dr Raphael Shirley.

The Healthy Heart Awards were founded in 2010 by healthy heart charity the Cardiovascular Research Trust (CVRT).

Awards co-founder and CVRT trustee Professor Donald Singer said: “The Awards provide an innovative way for young people to make an active contribution to the future health of their own hearts and those of children of all ages from around the world.”

Fellow Awards co-founder and CVRT trustee John Jackson added: “The Healthy Heart Awards also provide new opportunities within the curriculum for teaching and learning about science and health”.

Awards co-organizer Wendy French said: “We are delighted that participating pupils enjoyed taking part, while learning more about keeping the heart healthy”. She added: “Comments from the pupils included:

‘It brought us together as a class.’

‘It gave me something exciting to think about. I like inventing.’

‘It made us solve puzzles about how things could work and sometimes they didn’t!’

‘I didn’t know learning could be such fun.’“

The Awards ceremony took place at an international CVRT symposium on ‘Diet, Active Lifestyle and Cardiovascular Health’ on Thursday 5th December 2013.

Symposium speakers included Professor Dame Carol Black, Cambridge, on working for a healthier tomorrow, Professor Ramon Estruch, Barcelona, on protecting cardiovascular health by following a Mediterranean diet, Dr Ingmar Wester, Finland, on plant bioactives to reduce cardiovascular risk, and Professor Chris Imray, Coventry, on exercise to improve outcomes of surgery.

Notes for editors

For more on the Healthy Heart Awards including pictures from the day, contact the Cardiovascular Research Trust on

Information for entries to 2014 Healthy Heart Awards:

The Cardiovascular Research Trust (CVRT) is a registered charity, which supports research and education aimed at prevention and treatment of premature disease of the heart and circulation:

Awards Symposium topics and speakers

Working for a Healthier Tomorrow: Professor Dame Carol Black, DBE, FRCP, Principal of Newnham College Cambridge, Adviser on Work and Health at the Department of Health, England, Chair of the Nuffield Trust and Chair of the Governance Board, Centre for Workforce Intelligence. Spearheaded by Carol Black as National Director, ‘Health, Work and Wellbeing’ is a joint initiative across government to improve the health and well-being of working age people.

Mediterranean diet and cardiovascular health: Professor Ramón Estruch, Medical Professor at the University of Barcelona. He leads Thematic Networks evaluating the effects of the Mediterranean Diet and its main components on primary prevention of cardiovascular disease in high-risk patients. He is also a member of the Advisory Committee of the EU European Foundation for Alcohol Research.

Healthy Heart Awards co-organizer: Wendy French was head of the Maudsley and Bethlem Hospital School for fifteen years and now works with people with aphasia/dysphasia, helping them to recover their use of language through poetry. With fellow poet Jane Kirwan, in 2013 she published Born in the NHS, a passionate defence of the NHS and a social history – families in sickness and health, the changing roles of health professionals – over the last seventy years.  Her prizes in international competitions include first prize in the NHS category of the Hippocrates Prize in 2010 and second prize in 2011.

Exercise and improving outcome of surgery: Chris Imray, Professor of Vascular Surgery at the University Hospital in Coventry. He is interested in the effects of extreme altitude on the cardiovascular system, in prevention and treatment of carotid artery stroke syndromes, and in strategies for improving outcomes of vascular surgery.

Reader of entries for the Healthy Heart Awards: Dr Raphael Shirley performed at the Edinburgh Festival in 2012 and 2013. For more see Raph’s website:

Diet and exercise to reverse overweight: what works? Donald Singer, Professor of Clinical Pharmacology & Therapeutics at the University of Warwick. Professor Singer is interested in prevention and treatment of cardiovascular disease, and in public understanding of the benefits and risks of medicines.

The Lifestyle Heart Trial: 23 years on. Dr Ellen Storm, is a medical doctor training in paediatrics and child health. She has a Masters Degree in public health and has a particular scientific interest in the causal relationships between diet and disease.

Plant stanols, blood lipids and cardiovascular health: Dr Ingmar Wester, R & D Director at Finnish company Raisio. He discovered plant stanol esters in 1995 and has researched their cardiovascular benefits.