A $550,000 grant from the W.W. Caruth Jr. Fund at the Communities Foundation of Texas supports a 12-month study examining the effects of healthy eating on glucose control in impoverished patients with Type 2 diabetes, currently living with high rates of food insecurity and obesity. Culinary medicine is an emerging field and a new educational and nutritional approach to improving eating behaviors, focusing on skills such as food shopping, storage, and meal preparation. Dr. Michael Bowen is leading the study that will determine the effectiveness of culinary medicine with hands-on, experiential cooking classes versus standard-of-care, clinic-based nutrition education. UTSW is collaborating with other community partners to provide food and access to the classes.
The promising study’s interventions have the potential to improve glycemic control of the participant, influence eating practices of family members, and better the health of entire families, leading to potential changes in BMI, blood pressure, and lipids.