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The Red Heart Kitchen Project™ Beating Hunger & Heart Disease

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Red Heart Kitchen(TM)
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Sunita S. Pandit Mrs. Cardiology
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The Red Heart Kitchen Project™… Beating Hunger and Heart Disease by  Low & High Tech Methods to  Educate, Train and Coordinate  Resources  
The desire to soothe gnawing hunger pains and to eat healthy wholesome foods that nourishes body, mind and spirit is just a wish for one out of seven Americans.  Hunger, poverty and its related medical, psychological, moral and social problems has a tenacious grip on millions of Americans.    
The Great Recession has receded and unemployment is under 5%.  Yet the number of people who are dependent on the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (Food Stamps) has risen sharply.  In 2008 when unemployment was under 5%, 28 million were on supplemental food programs.  Today in 2016, 44 million Americans are facing hunger and rely on the SNAP program and food pantries to meet their needs.   
In Pennsylvania 1.4 million residents are relying on the SNAP and other sources to meet their needs.    Poverty levels are rising and Southwestern Pennsylvania is no exception.   In 2000, the poverty rate in the Pittsburgh MSA was 10.8 percent and today it is 12.3%. 
    Numbers do not mean anything unless you put a face to them.  1 out of 7 people in our area face hunger, mal-nourishment, illness and chronic disease due to insufficient and inadequate food supply.  The nutritionally under-served are with us wherever we go, and are not limited to:   o   Children, parents, grandparents, relatives and senior citizens
o   The physically challenged and underemployed
o   Veterans and their families, college students
o   The single parent who works 3 part time jobs
o   The clerk at the pharmacy, grocery store or local coffee shop
o   The day care worker who takes care of your child
o   The janitor who cleans your office 
o   The disruptive teenager who does not eat so his brother and sister can
    A myriad of health and medical problems arise from an insufficient and unhealthy food supply.  These problems include:   
·       Heart attacks and strokes ·       High blood pressure ·       Type 2 Diabetes ·     
       High Cholesterol 
·       Arteriosclerosis ·       Chronic Anemia ·     
       Developmental delays in children, 
·       Increased chronic diseases in the elderly ·                          Anxiety and stress related diseases ·       Obesity  
All of the above occur as a direct result of eating fat loaded, high sugar, and carbohydrate dense foods to manage and satisfy hunger.      Children and seniors are the most vulnerable of these populations.   Children and many seniors depend on others to supply their needs.  Many parents and caregivers of children and seniors, lack the knowledge of how to prepare good nutrition on limited budgets and resort to foods that “satisfy” hunger, yet create long term health issues.

  
  Children who grow up in nutritionally deprived households carry destructive eating habits for a life time.  Even when they “work” their way out of poverty their learned eating habits will often lead to chronic and acute diseases.    Seniors often lack the mobility and local resources to obtain and prepare healthy meals.  They also may be locked into “old” cooking habits that are negative and harmful to their health and further decrease their ability to manage their life.   
    The Red Heart Kitchen ™ Project is an effort led by Sunita S. Pandit, BSc Computer Science, “Mrs. Cardiology” - Practice Manager for her husband Santosh M. Pandit, MD, FAAC a cardiologist.  Sunita, Dr. Santosh Pandit and her team utilize their 35 years of experience in cardiovascular health care and technology to provide practical solutions to address nourishing the body in a fun, healthy and tasty way. They propose unique solutions using low and high tech methods to change the “hunger game” in our area.   
   1.    Conduct seminars/webinars that incorporate heart healthy tips and recipes by “Mrs. Cardiology” working with a limited food budget. These webinars will be accessed in a number of ways…from individuals, to public school and community libraries, senior centers, day care facilities and other community resource centers.  
 2.    Conduct cooking workshops that teach nutrition through tasty, yet heart healthy recipes.  The workshops will feature various local restaurant chefs to provide multiple styles and techniques.
 3.    Measure the “students” in the class for their anti-oxidant levels using the Pharmanex Bio-Photonic Scanner™. Record the results at the beginning, and after six weeks of class to show how lifestyle changes have a direct benefit to health. 
    4.    The solution after education is a co-operative program between local farmers, food distributors, government programs, farmer's markets and food pantries to effect availability, incentives to purchase healthy foods and delivery.
  5.     Sunita Pandit currently produces the Mrs.Cardiology ™-Heart Tips, Not Tricks, Podcast with a local and international following.  Mrs.Cardiology ™ is an anchor podcast on the popular pplmag.com, PositivelyPittsburghLiveMagazine.com, which garners over 3 million visitors per year and is Pittsburgh's Premiere Podcasting Portal.  She plans to establish the Red Heart Kitchen(TM) podcast to further engage her current local audience along with the Red Heart Kitchen (TM)  video podcasts and webinars, also to be hosted on pplmag.com and Itunes, Stitcher Radio and Player.fm..


Submitted

Nov 30 2016

Organization Organization Type

Nonprofit

Challenge

Healthy Food

Product Stage

Concept

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