For many, cooking can be an individualistic adventure; you decide what to buy at the grocery store, what to cook, when to cook it, and how much of it to devour. However, cooking can also be a social adventure, the chance for groups of people to come together over shared food. Sometimes, a nutrition expert can also get involved for an even more complex and enlightening combination of food and people.
Tips for individuals:
- Supplement a main dish that you’ve brought home from a restaurant with less-expensive side dishes that you make or buy from the grocery store.
- Research what actually helps people eat better and what the research shows.
- Learn how to shop well by keeping an eye out for low-cost, healthy choices.
- Make and eat healthy, easy snacks instead of junk food.
- Check out our website for easy, healthy lunch recipes that can be taken to-go. Please, note that there is no “Lunch” tab because the “Soups and Salads,” “Dinner,” and even “Sides” tabs can serve as great lunch ideas, in addition to their main purposes.
Tips for organizations:
- Brainstorm tips for personal assistants and family members to empower the disabled person’s nutrition awareness, cooking skills, and shopping skills and to assert his/her food choices.
- Offer “good food discussion” groups at disability centers or groups, and don’t forget to also offer healthy snacks there!
- Invite a local chef to give a talk or demonstration.
- Join up with another organization to create a cooking class– list options of agencies somewhere easily accessible for all of your members.
Tips about recruiting nutritional expertise:
- Most states have begun developing programs to help low-income families improve their nutrition. These programs are often state-based versions of the federal program SNAP (Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program).
- Some of these programs have disability awareness built-in.
- Use the Internet to research what these programs look like in your state.
- These programs should be full of nutrition experts, but you can also find experts online.
- Don’t be afraid to reach out to experts and ask them to visit your favorite cooking club or disability organization, so you and your community can learn more about nutrition together.