The Suppers Program is a nonprofit organization started by Princeton resident Dorothy Mullen. Dorothy has her master’s degree in counseling from the College of New Jersey, and through her work with clients in recovery, realized that very few organizations approach addiction holistically. Many of her clients didn’t know how to cook a meal, let alone follow a nutritionally-sound diet.
Dorothy herself had had health problems that conventional medicine couldn’t help. She had decided to return to graduate school, interested in the role of nutrition, blood chemistry and mood chemistry in psychological counseling issues. It was through working with her clients, teaching them about proper nutrition (along with her own food experiences) that caused her to start Suppers.
She started her research on alcoholics having a difficult time with recovery and called her support group Suppers for Sobriety. She taught cooking and the benefits of a holistic diet to recovering alcoholics. However, she knew that her larger audience would be anyone experiencing blood sugar or mood chemistry issues.
Dorothy is very focused on giving participants the help they need. She experiences a “helper’s high” when Suppers members reverse their diabetes or get off medications. Participating in their healing is Dorothy’s sole and greatest reward.
She hopes to turn the Suppers program into a nonprofit organization where she can match facilitators, who know how to cook, with “seekers,” people whose health and mental health challenges require lifestyle changes and support in making it happen. She is determined that the program be kept free from any commercial elements, effective and available to anyone regardless of the ability to pay.
With Suppers, the only cost is the cost of the groceries to prepare your meal. Participants meet at the home of a facilitator, help in cooking the dishes served at the luncheon, and then eat the meal together while discussing important topics such as:
- the effect of sugar on ADHD, alcohol craving, and depression
- the benefits of a gluten-free diet for intestinal ailments such as Crone’s disease,
- the challenge of sticking to a healthful diet and other issues of nutritional harm reduction
which means, in the words of the Suppers Programs website, “gentle manageable changes taken at one’s own pace and on one’s own terms to reduce the consequences” of whatever problem a member is struggling with, whether it be diabetes, obesity, GI diseases or stress ailments.
Candidates for the Suppers programs include anyone whose health, mental health and recovery challenges require diet and lifestyle changes. The Suppers emphasis on whole foods is particularly helpful for anyone with diet-related depression, anxiety, learning issues, obesity, diabetes and problems with alcohol.
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Bonnie Schultz loves to cook+local CSA farms+healthy living. We hope you’ll catch her here again! She also writes for www.theblogthatatenewjersey.blogspot.com