Thursday, September 30, 2021

Mindful Eating for the Beloved Community


Chef Alex Askew leads a cooking session for Mindful Eating for the Beloved Community.

Members of Bronx Health REACH’s Faith-Based Outreach Initiative: St. Helena Catholic Church, Word of Life International, Walker Memorial Baptist Church, Church of God of Prophecy, and Sacred Heart Church have been participating in the first cohort of Mindful Eating for the Beloved Community, a program put together in partnership with BCA Global and the Interfaith Public Health Network. The program is based on the book Mindful Eating for the Beloved Community, a collection of essays compiled by BCA Global President and CEO, Alex Askew.

The program began with an interview Chef Alex conducted with Fr. David Powers from St. Helena Catholic Church about what it means to build the Beloved Community through mindful eating, and why it’s particularly important for lifting the Bronx out of its rank of 62/62 in health factors and health outcomes in New York State. The nine-session program includes skill-building in mindful eating, and cooking demonstrations by Chef Alex Askew featuring healthy ways of preparing traditional favorites (including power shakes, turkey lasagna, black beans and corn, and desserts).

Also included is the opportunity for personal reflection to enable healthier lives, social change and a deeper connection between body, mind, and spirit. The fourth session delved into the history of sugar, going back to its origins in sugar plantations, colonization and the slave trade. After learning about these ugly historical origins to our current food system, in the remaining sessions participants will learn ways to become involved in building the Beloved Community envisioned by The Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., through creating a food system that is rooted in health and food justice. 

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