I’m sure it’s clear from my blogging musings that I absolutely adore cooking, but more and more I am also loving learning about the healing power of food (known as naturopathy). Last year I completed my first official nutrition course – a 12 week evening course at the College of Naturopathic Medicine in London. Some of you may recall reading my summary once I’d finished. Having studied a little nutrition and also enrolling on cooking classes this last year – not healthy ones mind – I’ve been keen to develop these two aspects on one course side to side. Not many classes of this nature exist in the UK – either short courses or those that gain you a professional qualification – so when CNM decided to launch a Cooking for Health Course I was dead keen to sign up.
The course is just 6 weeks, and runs 3 times a year, each 6 week stint focusing on slightly different subjects – all aimed to teach us how to cook amazing recipes to improve our health. My 6 subjects were; gluten & dairy Free, foods for immunity, foods for cardiovascular health, foods to support detoxification, raw food, and healthy treats.
The first four weeks were taken by Holly Taylor; A nutritionist, foodie, gluten free cook and advocate of the Paleo diet – who talked passionately about cooking for health throughout backed up with an insane amount of nutritional information. We were provided with lecture notes and recipes in advance each week – mine are now covered in additional scribbles – I think that proves that point!
The course takes place in CNM’s newly refurbished kitchen lecture room over 2 and a half hour s each Monday night. Holly – plus her trusty assistant led from the kitchen whilst the class group of about 24 sat in lecture-room style rows watching. Roughly 4 recipes were made up each week accompanied by plenty of nutritional information and cooking tips. At the end of each class we got to taste some deliciously healthy samples!
- Top Left: Pickled Lemon & Pumpkin Butter Stuffed Rainbow Trout (Cardiovascular health)
- Top Right: Apple Coleslaw (support detoxification)
- Bottom Left: Chicory & Rocket Salad (support detoxification)
- Bottom Right: Gluten-Free Gingerbread (ginger supports detoxification: NB the ongoing process of bodily detoxification is not the same as going on a full blown detox – this therefore doesn’t meant that eating cake whilst on a detox is being suggested here – just so we got that clear…)
Prior to starting the course I was initially a little concerned that having already done the 12 week nutrition course and also being what I would call quite an experienced cook that I would be learning things I already knew. To some extent this has turned out to be true, however since you never stop learning I have still picked up tonnes of useful information and some fun new recipes – it just goes to show how much there is to learn! Also leaving the course buzzing each week, excited and engaged by a subject I am so interested in is an inspiring way to end a Monday evening.
We switch course leaders next week and I will write my review of part 2 when I’ve finished. Till then I will leave you with a top tip and a fab phrase from weeks 1-4.
Top tip: The top nutrients & flavour in ginger root are just under the surface so when prepping to use scrape the skin clean with a spoon rather than peeling with a knife. More good stuff goes into your food that way.
Fab phrase: White Potatoes without the skin are pretty much a nutritional non-event.
Disclaimer: I was invited by the college to provide this blog article. All views are my own.