By Millie Drum
Cancer changes the way the body uses food. Research reveals that some tumors produce chemicals that alter the way the body uses certain nutrients. The body’s use of nutrients may be affected, particularly by stomach and intestinal cancer. While someone facing cancer may seem to be eating enough, their body may not be able to absorb all of the most healing nutrients. For someone dealing with the lack of appetite, nausea and digestive issues, the need for easily assimilated, nutritious food is even more critical.
Whole food, filled with a range of vitamins, minerals, protein, carbohydrates, fat and water that is properly prepared is an integral part of the recovery process. Individuals who are well nourished may have a better prognosis, more successful treatment and quality of life while dealing with the side effects of radiation and chemotherapy. Under the direction of Founder and Therapeutic Chef Nancy Walker, The Wellness Kitchen and Resource Center provides nourishing food through the Wellness Foods and Healing Foods programs; as well as private consultations and classes such as Therapeutic Nutrition for Individuals touched with Cancer. Through the Pay It Forward program, Healing Foods and Broths are available to qualified recipients for little or no charge to those facing cancer or other health crisis, lack the support to have meals prepared and/or unable to afford the food.
Rebuilding Bone Marrow Broth is particularly nourishing for individuals going through cancer treatment with digestive and assimilation issues. Currently the Kitchen is making 50 quarts per week, with a growing demand, utilizing 24 pounds of marrow bones from grass fed cattle. An estimated minimum of 1248 pounds of bones is needed for the remainder of 2015. Local ranchers who raise grass fed cattle are encouraged to contact The Wellness Kitchen if they’re able to donate the bones. A Mineral Broth and Chicken Bone Broth are also available. The long simmering time with 16 other vital ingredients extracts as many minerals and nutrients as possible. Nancy adds, “With many of our patrons having difficulty eating or digesting, suffering with no appetite, drained of energy from debilitating chemotherapy treatments or recovery from surgery, bone broth offers the support for critical hydration, mineral support and rebuilding on a cellular level. Our clients are discovering new-found energy, help with digestive issues, and a nourishing way to build weakened immune systems. My greatest reward is when a patron shares how our meals and healing broths and teas ‘brought them back to live; restoring their energy.” Our good work is making a profound difference in people’s lives.” Anyone can “Sponsor a Broth” by purchasing a quart of broth for someone in need. Visit The Kitchen for details.
Volunteers Make it All Possible!
“The opportunity to prepare nourishing meals for individuals with cancer, other illnesses and those desiring a healthy way of life is truly heaven for me,” Nancy says. “Our passionate staff and volunteers (40-50) assist with phone calls, shopping, prepping, cooking, cleaning, packaging, delivering, supporting patrons, and assisting with classes and local events. It’s a fun place to work; surely a way to fill your own cup by giving to others and in turn, learning about healthy cooking practices. Take a closer look at The Kitchen and find out more about volunteer opportunities! The Wellness Kitchen and Resource Center is located at 1255 Las Tablas Road in Templeton. Call 434-1800. Click www.thewkrc.org.