You Are What You Eat

If you are what you eat, then in college I was: Ramen, Ramen, pizza, coffee, PB&J, coffee, Ramen, Ramen, Cheetos. I think that adequately sums up the menu from my dorm room when I was 19. If I had become a caregiver at that point, my idea of a healthy meal may have been a pizza and a Diet Coke. Let’s face it—at 25 I may still have thought that. For so many caregivers, serving individuals also means having to cook healthy meals. But for many, this skill doesn’t come naturally.

Healthy Cooking

Susan participating in a healthy cooking class.

There are many skills a caregiver must possess—creative thinking, flexibility, patience, adaptability, kind-heartedness…and, of course, a lot of these are more important than being the next Julia Child. But, as caregivers, we have the ability to help teach the people we support how to prepare meals, how to pack lunches and grocery shop, and to help them realize how to feel from eating well. This directly affects those we serve in their health, well-being, and confidence. Luckily, this can be taught so much more easily than the skills so many in the field already possess—you might not need kind-heartedness 101, but cooking class?…maybe.

Through donor funds and support from PartnerShip 4 Health, CCRI is able to provide healthy cooking classes for team members.  Because of these classes, team members not only can become instrumental in providing nutritious meals to the people they serve, but can also help team members teach and share these skills with their own families.

In a world that has become so full of instant gratification and convenience, the act of shopping for ingredients and preparing a homemade meal is truly an act of love and care. So many caregivers are able to realize this through healthy cooking classes. Cooking classes create bonds—you may look to your right and see a coworker who is a previous Ramen addict and be like, “I get you, girl. We can learn to make other things together. Solidarity.”  Or you may be so excited to get back to your work site and make a fabulous dish with your client. You are what you eat, and because of donors supporting cooking class at CCRI, many are finding out just how good it feels to not be Ramen anymore.

See more about this new program at CCRI here


Amber Lobdell

Amber Lobdell has been a caregiver with CCRI for the past five years. She is overjoyed to have a platform to share stories from the heart. Amber is also a painter and a lifelong Dr. Pepper lover. She lives in Fargo with her husband, two kids, and two dogs.

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