Gather around the kitchen with Chef Melissa C. Bernstein, OT, FAOTA, for meals that warm the heart and welcome EVERYONE to join in the joy and fun of food and festivities that nourish the mind, body and soul!
Chef Melissa blazes a special culinary trail! As an occupational therapist, her kitchen vision was one founded on love – an inspiration that began at a very young age. Join us, as we talk about the magic of food, how it unites, serves as a soothing salve, and can be the epicenter of well-celebrated living and sustenance beyond the belly.
We start the show in the opening, talking about the love of food, since the dawn of time! Yes, everyone loves food! And the kitchen is where the action is, the heart of the home, and food preparation is an important facet of mealtime. Making the meal is filled with enriching connections while engaging all our senses and creating wonderful feelings of joy and appreciation. Regardless of skills or challenge, Melissa has opened the kitchen and is Serving up Love!
Her book, Power of 5 Test Kitchen Cookbook: Caregiver Edition, is a special one as is her kitchen, Power of 5 Test Kitchen! Melissa recognized the challenges of cooking for loved ones battling neurodegenerative illnesses as well as the importance of keeping them engaged in meaningful activities. So, she set out to find ways to keep everyone safe and engaged during meal preparation! Using her skills as both a veteran occupational therapist and certified chef, she answered the call providing recipes, helpful hints, tools and even “Melissa’s Modifications.” Her book is a hit for caregivers and care recipients as well as anyone who enjoys uniting in the kitchen to the fullest capacity seeking healthy fare. But she also takes it a step further and talks about Adaptive Kitchen Equipment, with photos, provides an Abilities Inventory to assist in determining the level of abilities, and we even discuss specific challenges one may have with regard to swallowing, chewing, tastes and more.
Instead of bringing food to loved ones, Melissa has opened the kitchen to all – because everyone not only loves food, but they love everything that food is about! This is what makes her book is a must read and this episode so important! Beyond the Test Kitchen, Melissa discusses the Power of 5 Principles for a healthy lifestyle and the work she enjoys supporting and collaborating on with her husband, Dr. David Bernstein, a leading Geriatrician, author, speaker and former guest on the Aging GreatFULLy show.
Melissa Bernstein is Founder, President and CEO of the Dynamic companies, since 1993, Dynamic Healthcare Solutions, Inc. provided healthcare clinical and operational consulting to an array of healthcare organizations. With over thirty-five years of clinician and consulting experience in geriatric rehabilitation, her focus was providing occupational therapy and rehab management in long term care, home health and outpatient rehab settings for both adults and children. Melissa’s Power of 5 Test Kitchen took flight in 2018, incorporating Part 2 of Dr. Bernstein’s Power of 5 book, Putting Healthy Eating into Practice. In 2019, Melissa became a certified chef through Forks Over Knives and Rouxbe Cooking Academy.
To learn more about her work, connect with her, order her book, Power of 5 Test Kitchen Cookbook: Caregiver Edition, also available at your favorite booksellers, visit her at www.powerof5testkitchen.com where you can also sign up to receive healthy recipes delivered right into your inbox, learn more about the Power of 5 and so much more!
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