It is a known fact, that cooking is a multi-dimensional skill, involving all senses. The mind, the soul, the heart are all involved, while cooking. No wonder it is said cooking is an Art as well as a Science.
Ask any home-maker if she enjoys cooking. For a person, who considers cooking meals a chore, then it is very difficult to churn out delicious meals. Whereas, a person who puts her heart and soul into cooking meals, will always be pleasantly surprised at the delicious turnout of the meal. Putting heart and soul into cooking comes naturally to a mother preparing meals for her children. No work is too much for a Mom. Salute to all moms.
When in stress, if you turn to cooking, and know that there are hungry mouths to feed, the cooking will almost always relax you as your mind is now diverted to a different mode. Try it and observe the state of your mind, during such a situation.
A person in depression, if makes an initial effort and turns towards cooking, he/she will soon be out of depression. However a note of caution. The person will have to keep a check on her weight, else this could lead to further problems. A person undergoing depression will behave in an extreme manner, either going off food completely or trying to forget their worries by overloading themselves with food. The better alternative is to turn to cooking, rather than banging on food.
I will share a personal experience. I was undergoing lot of mental tension as a member of my family was facing health issues, where she was not permitted to eat her favorite foods, like mutton, chicken, eggs, and allowed to eat only limited quantities of vegetarian food. She was on a Yo-Yo diet, with minimal salt & sugar,as she was a diabetic.And to top it all she was a food gourmet.So not getting her favorite foods, took a toll on her health and put her into depression.In my effort to ensure that she get the required diet,I took special measures, and made different vegetables in various combination.Now although , she resisted initially,when she saw other family members enjoying the meals, she calmed down and started enjoying the meals, and it showed on her health.There were two outcomes out of this,one the vegan food had a calming effect on her, and her health improved gradually.Two,I realized I had the potential to turn out delicious recipes.This was a great boost to my self esteem.Till date, we all have stuck to this new diet, although the family member has recovered, and no more requires to be on a diet.
Illness attack us in all forms.Opposite to diabetic illness, where the patient craves for food, is the diseases like tuberculosis, where it is necessary for the patient to eat regular meals, and it has to be literally forced. Talk about food, and the patient feels upset.Can`t even take in food conversation, leave alone food.Now this is a very tricky situation.Here we have to ensure, that minimal attention is given to meal talks, however ensure adequate meals prepared.And the best way to do this would be to turn to foods which are high in nutrition.Hence we have to be very selective in ensuring that delicious meals are turned out from foods liked by the patient.And the key word here should be simplicity.Don`t cook meals that have a lot of aroma.Because, just the aroma will make the patient feel nauseous.Care has to be taken that just enough flavor is used, not too much nor too little.And no fancy exotic dishes.Keep the person distracted with other topics, and just feed her as a matter of fact.No hankering about insufficient intake,lack of interest in food.This will simply not help.Just flow with the tide.And stick to small meals.
No one can deny the benefits of food, which is of-course a necessity, however looking towards cooking meals as a therapeutic exercise will ensure happiness, to the giver as well the recipient.