Nutrition plays a vital role in health—particularly in the prevention and management of chronic conditions. Guidelines like those in the widely known MyPlate model created by the US. Department of Agriculture can help people understand the types of foods they should eat, but it can be challenging to put those guidelines into practice. That is especially true for those with limited means.
The new state-of-the-art teaching kitchen at Case Western Reserve University School of Medicine aims to lay the foundations for improved nutrition for students at all levels—and for the broader community.
Believed to be the largest teaching kitchen of its type in the United States, the 2,300-square-foot facility features workstations for 48 students, a full walk-in pantry, an on-site laundry room and a dishwashing area. To further extend learning opportunities, there is an audio-visual system that allows for livestreaming and the ability to create training modules that can be shared widely with healthcare professionals.
Although housed in the Department of Nutrition, all undergraduates, graduate students and medical students can benefit from the new kitchen. Students in the Master of Science in Nutrition program specifically will put the concepts they’ve learned in classes such as “Culinary & Lifestyle Medicine Coaching” into practice.
Meanwhile, undergraduate students in courses such as the popular Case Cooks series will be able to take advantage of the state-of-the-art facility to build their confidence in the kitchen. In addition to gaining hands-on experience making nutritious meals for themselves, medical students will be better equipped to guide their patients in healthier eating habits.
Furthermore, the kitchen will play an important role in the implementation of the Jack, Joseph and Morton Mandel Wellness and Preventive Care Pathway, which seeks to prepare medical students to take holistic approaches to patient care and tend to their own self-care.
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