By Jane Miller, Community Arts Coordinator
“Art Behind Eating” is a unique way of combining art with nutrition and… TABLEWARE MANUFACTURE?
Every day we are bombarded with the same old messages about what we should and shouldn’t eat. There are so many conflicting messages that it’s hard to know which ones are important for our particular health needs. But what if there was a way that we can send ourselves a message about what WE think we should and should not eat, and how much?
To answer this question, the people who access Flourish Australia’s services at Seven Hills and Blacktown have been participating in a pilot project that I have put together as Community Art Coordinator along with Jade Ryall (Manager of the Back On Track Health program). Our aim is to look at food and eating with all five of our senses. We wanted to develop something that was fun and interactive, rather than just repeating the same boring message all the time.
For example, say you want to increase your intake of certain types of food, particularly vegetables, low GI carbohydrates and proteins. With the Art Behind Eating group, you can take one of our plates and paint the types of food and the portion size you require on it in order to jog your memory. We use chip-resistant Corelle plates from the USA, so they aren’t easy to break. Of course, while you can also buy these plates ready-made for about $17, this would be yet another case of someone else telling you how you should eat. Jade and I want people to make these decisions for themselves.
A big part of this project is education. We start by looking at the colour, feel, smell, taste and even the sound of different types of food, but eventually the idea is for participants to become mindful of food types and portions in a new way. At the end of each session the whole group comes together to make a great, healthy lunch.
We want all participants to be able to create a lovely plate which they can take home with them and use it to portion out and serve colourful and healthy meals.
Jade and I hope that some more ABE groups will be held soon. It could be coming to a site near you, so keep your five senses alert! If you would like to know more, you can give us a call.
Jade Ryall, Program Manager, Back On Track Health (BOTH)
(02) 9393 9009
Jane Miller, Community Arts Coordinator
(02) 9393 9008