Whether I am teaching my 3-year old nephew at home, teenagers at school, or adults in my community classes, my mission is to teach all people basic cooking skills, re-establish a connection to where our food comes from, and bring the joy back into preparing and sharing food together. With our increasingly busy, stress-filled lifestyles, we are becoming disconnected from our food: where it comes from, how it gets to us, what it is made up of, and what we should do with it. This leads to confusion, anxiety, fear, and apathy towards what should be a source of pleasure, health, and community. We’ve come to prize convenience and cheapness over quality and integrity. It is my sincere hope to inspire people to value the experience of preparing and eating food not just as sustenance for our physical bodies, but also as something that inspires joy, ties into our emotions and memories, and brings us together with other people. Food fuels our bodies, enriches our lives, expresses our cultures, and nourishes our souls. I believe that we should make it a top priority rather than an afterthought.
How to Practice Joyful Cooking and Empowered Eating
Believe that ANYONE can cook
Cooking doesn’t have to be complicated. It’s never too early or late to learn. If you feel well-equipped to cook, then you can enjoy it and make time for it.
Make cooking a cherished part of your lifestyle
Cooking is joy. Cooking is an expression of love. We make time for what we value – your health and happiness are worth it!
Go back to basics and prepare real food from scratch, simply
Take back your power from the processed food industry, advertisers, and “miracle” diet industry. Be wary of any food or supplement that needs flashy commercials, mascots, or incentives to convince you why you should eat it. Be an advocate for real food.
Eat in harmony with nature and in harmony with your values
Whenever possible, choose foods that are produced in a way that respects the health of: the environment, the farmers, the animals, the cooks, and the eaters. This will look different for everyone and that’s okay!
Discover the foods that make your unique body thrive and feel powerful
Your personal eating pattern should be adaptable and flexible to the nuances of your life, and address all facets of your health in a balanced way. Continue this discovery process of what works best for you for the rest of your life as you change and grow. Trust your own body and listen to its wisdom.
Remember there is no such thing as a “perfect diet”
Healthy eating is a lifestyle, not a temporary state, fad diet, cleanse, or supplement program. There is no one “best” diet. In fact, there are 7 billion best diets for the 7 billion unique individuals who make up this world.
Use food to spread joy not judgement
People are not defined or ranked by their eating habits, so let’s lose the labels and the idolization. Abandon rules, guilt, shame, deprivation, and obsession. Relax and don’t take food so seriously!
Before you fill your belly, fill your heart with gratitude for everything that brought your food onto your plate. What a great gift we are given to nourish ourselves with delicious food every day.
Good food is best when it’s shared. Food is something universal to all people, not just in terms of survival. It a language that we can all understand and appreciate. Share the acts of cooking and eating with others as an expression of love, care, gratitude, celebration, support, and community.