Culinary medicine is an emerging field of evidence-based medicine that employs a holistic and preventive approach to care. By combining the science of nutrition with the art of food and cooking, patients receive concrete tools to improve eating habits, make lifestyle changes, and optimize nutritional health.
The importance of culinary medicine has been spurred by an increase of people eating their meals in restaurants as opposed to home preparation, an increase of highly processed and convenience foods that are perceived as more palatable than healthy foods, the rising costs of healthcare pertaining to diet-related health risks and diseases, and a growing enthusiasm for additive-free organic food, home gardening and local farmer’s markets.
Culinary Medicine fully engages the patient in the process of using food as a tool for achieving a well-balanced diet and optimal health. Culinary medicine is dedicated to the prevention and treatment of obesity, diabetes, hypertension, cardiovascular disease, cancer, and other nutrition-related ailments. Essentially, culinary medicine helps address the patient’s primary concern of “what do I eat for my particular condition or complaint?” Our goal is to improve patients’ conditions by providing tools to modify their favorite recipes using healthier options and by educating them that food can restore health when responsibly chosen.
In-depth appointments explore eating and sleep habits, stress levels, and incorporates food diaries with tailored recommendations for nutritional improvements. As a component of culinary medicine, nutrition counseling offers patients personalized plans that address individual needs by helping to create and maintain healthy eating habits and provide a clear plan to meet individual nutritional goals. We empower our patients to care for themselves safely, effectively, and enthusiastically with food and beverage as a culinary medical technique. Special attention is focused on how food works in the body and the sociocultural and pleasurable aspects of eating and cooking.
In our state-of-the-art learning kitchen, patients participate in cooking a meal with a physician to learn healthy, cost-effective ways to modify their favorite recipes with nutritious ingredients. The goal of the learning kitchen is to provide an interactive method to delve into nutrition while receiving guidance to improve how and what they cook. The chef at home becomes the doctor because health or disease starts with the food that is being offered at home. Our goal is to teach our patients in the community how to influence healing with healthy, nutrition-rich cooking.
For more information about culinary medicine, visit:
What Is Culinary Medicine and What Does It Do? (nih.gov)