Welcome Four New Board Members!
Leaders Looking to Partner with Local Organizations to Inspire Delicious New Programs
PRINCETON, N.J. – June 1, 2022 – Eating for Your Health announced today the addition of four board members. These board members will support the efforts to engage with various community partners as a host to deliver educational programs that champion the nonprofit’s effort to source and cook tasty, whole food meals without processed ingredients – in a non-judgmental environment.
“We’re thrilled to expand our board with these four distinguished leaders. We know that with their commitment to Eating for Your Health, they are ready to use their diverse experience and connections to propel us forward,” said Marion Reinson, executive director of Princeton, N.J.-based Eating for Your Health. “Their respective expertise and contacts in various industries will help our group reach new communities and households where better health, a sharper mind, and delicious recipes are just a few steps away—in the kitchen.”
The four new members are:
• Mary Wagner, an associate professor at the Ernst Mario School of Pharmacy at Rutgers University, where she teaches neurology. Wagner specializes in ADHD, Alzheimer's, headaches, Parkinson's, seizures and sleep disorders, and her scholarship is in addressing patients with neurological conditions. Wagner is also the director of interprofessional education with the other health schools at Rutgers.
• Dr. Delores Williams, a retired, board-certified obstetrician and gynecologist and physician advisor. Her clinical experience includes managing a medical practice specializing in menopausal medicine, preventive care and public education. In addition, Williams is a nationally recognized expert, presenter and community advocate on health maintenance, adolescent gynecology, menopause, managed care and denial management.
• Agnes Benneh, a former telecommunication technical expert, technology leader and global IT Project Manager at Verizon. There, Benneh helped lead the deployment of various applications for FiOS, voice, data, TV and other rapid product development initiatives. In addition, she was a pioneer in the introduction and deployment of Verizon’s first fiber to the home technology and services in its footprint.
• Jim D’Ovidio, owner and founder of Brown Dog Marketing, which supplies corporate gifts, promotional products, screen printing and embroidering. The agency ranks in the top 10% of promotional product distributors. D’Ovidio was awarded Entrepreneur of the Year from the Princeton Regional Chamber of Commerce in 2009.
Each member will work with Reinson and other board colleagues and volunteers to create innovative programs in partnership with other non-profit and for-profit organizations. For instance, work is in progress to bring Eating for Your Health’s in-person and remote nutritional webinars to a nonprofit that helps provide housing relief to lower-income residents. Similar efforts are underway to bring programs to a women’s health organization and a 55-and-over community.
“We’re always looking to partner with organizations with similar values: understanding the value of cooking and eating whole, unprocessed, nutrient-rich food to support overall health,” Reinson said. “It doesn’t matter where someone is from, how old they are or their socioeconomic status. When you work with Eating for Your Health, you’re helping to bring critically important—maybe even lifesaving—educational programs backed by robust science and research to those who need it most in exciting, non-judgmental environments.”
Eating for Your Health Grows Beyond What Suppers Started - Princeton Echo - March 30, 2022
Marion Reinson needed someone to babysit her fermenting sauerkraut. It was an epiphany she never intended to have, the “ah-ha” moment coming from her involvement with the organization Eating for Your Health by Suppers, formerly known as The Suppers Programs or just Suppers. Reinson, now the executive director, was an advisory board member for the group under the guidance of founder Dorothy Mullen, who created the Princeton-based nonprofit by coordinating shared meal meetings in homes and public spaces.
“[With] the work that Dorothy put into this organization, she was way ahead of her time. But what we’re doing now is spreading that word of how you eat and how you feel are interrelated, and the science is also caught up with food and mood,” Reinson says.
Because of the pandemic, Suppers, which recently changed its name to Eating for Your Health (EFYH) has done away with tableside meetings and hands-on gardening lessons. Now, webinars and online resources abound, the group pivoting from its function as a support group to providing “education and awareness to help people understand the direct correlation between what you eat, how you feel, and your health,” as Reinson describes.
Their foundational principles are exemplified through the seven pillars of EFYH — how you feel is data, biological individuality, develop a taste for healthy food, support, medical practitioners and community partners, nutritional harm reduction, and non-judgment — with the last principle being essential to EFYH’s mission.
We are so pleased to announce the appointment of
Marie Morrison in charge of Program and Development
In this position, Marie will manage all aspects of Eating for Your Health programs and special events. Her focus is on both piloting new programs and promoting existing programs such as the “What’s In Your Grocery Cart?”, “Healthy Cooking on a Budget”, “Healthy Weight Management" and other programs to help people to prevent and reduce the impact of chronic disease. In addition, she will be building a roster of speakers and subject matter experts to participate in panel discussions and upcoming programs.
“We’re so excited to have Marie join the Eating For Your Health – Suppers’ team says Marion Reinson, Eating For Your Health – Suppers Executive Director. “Our programs allow us to engage and cultivate relationships with community and business organizations” continues Reinson. “Having Marie on board enables us to provide even more programming to people ready or curious about eating in a healthier way.”
In 2019, Marie began her holistic health education and became a Certified Holistic Health Counselor, CHHC. Prior to her certification, Marie spent years reading, researching and changing what she ate to address a diagnosis of osteopenia and osteoporosis as well as learning holistic ways minimize hot flashes that came with early onset menopause. “I wish that I had the structure of a program like Eating for Your Health when I was teaching myself. I like helping people realize that the burger they are craving may be their innate body wisdom making sure they get the iron they need. Nothing is better than listening to what your body tells you because ‘How You Feel is Data®’.”
Stay tuned for exciting new programs over the next several months – including healthy eating programs for businesses to offer their employees – all which will continue to reinforce the Eating For Your Health’s belief that How You Feel Is Data!®
August 2021 Recap
Since August is a month where gardens are providing a plentiful harvest of vegetables, this month’s focus is all about vegetables. It doesn’t matter if you eat a few veggies or mostly veggies, there’s something for everyone!
Here’s a look back at this month’s Suppers’ featured content:
Blog: Veggies & Digestion
Resource: Video - Making Homemade Hummus
Resource: Article - Summer on a Plate
Resource: Video - Preserving the Harvest
Resource: Drink Your Plants Webinar
Resource: Video - Easy Vegan Sushi Rolls
Recipe: Pickled Summer Squash
Farm Spotlight: Trenton Farmers Market
Farm Spotlight: Alstede Farm
Farm Spotlight: Stults Farm Farmstand
Farm Spotlight: Suydam Farms
July 2021 Recap
It’s all about protein in July. Whether you’re a meat-lover, vegan, or vegetarian there are several options for including healthy proteins in your diet.
Here’s a look back at July’s featured content:
Blog: Connecting with Collagen
Webinar: Edible Flowers with Bountiful Gardens (with Tish Streeten) - to come
Virtual Event: Loving and Cooking with Your CSA (with Jeff Organics)
Recipe: Gina’s Vegan Lentil Burgers
Recipe: Protein Salad
Recipe: Chicken and Quinoa Couscous
Recipe: Asian Flank Steak Salad
Farm Spotlight: Griggstown Farm Market
Farm Spotlight: Morganics Family Farm
Farm Spotlight: Terhune Orchards
Farm Spotlight: Cherry Grove Farm
June 2021 Recap
In June we delved into food sensitivities and helped you focus on what your body is telling you. What After all, How You Feel is Data® Are there certain foods that aren’t right for you? What are your substitution options if there are.
Here’s a look back at Suppers’ featured content during the month of June:
Virtual Event: Loving and Cooking with Your CSA (with Honey Brook Organic)
Recipe: Best Vegan Fudgesicles!
Recipe: Complete Meal Veggie Slaw
Farm Spotlight: Honey Brook Organic Farm
Farm Spotlight: Jeff’s Organics Produce
Farm Spotlight: Bountiful Gardens
May 2021 Recap
May was filled with content exploring carbs and starches - learning how to fuel your body with foods that help you feel your best and promote long-term health.
Here’s a look back at this month’s Suppers’ featured content:
Blog: Sign Up for Our Weekly Blog – Eating for Your Health
Blog: Not All Carbs are Created Equal
Blog: What are Resistant Starches & Why They Matter
Blog: Planning is Everything
Resource: Tips for Health Eating
Resource: Member Story – Patricia’s Story
Resource: Memorial Day Meal Ideas
Resource Video: Nutritional Strategies to Reduce the Impact of Stress
Resource: Seasonal Food Guide
Webinar: Sugar, Food Addiction and Overeating (Psychology of Food Addiction)
Virtual Event: Loving and Cooking with Your CSA (with Comeback & Cabbage)
Recipe: Kale Chip “Taco” Salad
Recipe: Prosciutto Wrapped Asparagus
Recipe: Raw Vegan Collard Greens Wraps
Recipe: Grilled Romaine Lettuce
Farm Spotlight: Marchese Farm
Farm Spotlight: Comeback Farm
Farm Spotlight: Greenflash Farm
Farm Spotlight: Tindall Farms
April 2021 Recap
We are wrapping up a month of content focused on Bone Health and Gardening. If you haven’t already, sign up to receive our e-newsletter — full of events, recipes, farm features, gardening tips, and stories about Suppers members who have turned around their health and their lives.
March 2021 Recap
We are wrapping up a month of content focused on Maintaining a Healthy Weight. If you haven’t already, sign up to receive our e-newsletter — full of events, recipes, farm features, gardening tips, and stories about Suppers members who have turned around their health and their lives.
An Open Letter to Dor Mullen on the First Day of Spring (March 20)
What a year it’s been. In the year since you passed away, time seems to have stood still, yet so much has changed.
We are eagerly anticipating Spring and the new growth, new hope and new experiences that come along with it. We think of you when we prepare our gardens, make a pot of chili or soup or share information about eating for your health. We miss the flurry of activity in your kitchen and garden at this time of year.
At Suppers, we’ve been busy designing programs based on the pillars you established:
How You Feel is Data®, Biological Individuality, Nutritional Harm Reduction®, Developing a Taste for Healthy Food, aligning with like-minded Medical Practitioners and Community Partners and creating a Supportive Environment of Non-Judgement.
We have solidified a new concept called “You Are Your Best Ally In Your Health”, which emphasizes the importance of providing information so people can make decisions for themselves about what they should or should not eat; we are affirming a fundamental principal that people are capable in this process.
Our Commitments to You
- We have been running our Suppers meetings virtually – at no charge. No, it’s not the same as cooking and eating together, but there is great pleasure in being in the presence of like-minded and supportive Suppers’ friends – sharing information, recipes and ideas.
- The “What’s In Your Grocery Cart?” workshop is delivered three times per month and we are continually looking for new audiences to share this practical, yet empowering information. It’s a wonderful first step in learning about the foods you choose.
- We recently finished the first virtual Breakfast Challenge – where new people were exposed to a different way of thinking about their first meal of the day – and embracing the Breakfast Chili (or not!). As by your design, the participants had meaningful and transformational experiences – leading to a better understanding of how the foods they eat fuel their body and brain.
- The Dorothy Mullen Speaker Series to support the Princeton Public School Teachers is in the design stages – and we promise to follow your instructions to “set clear but not neurotic guidelines for how the events should be designated”.
- Continuously sharing information through our Webinar Series on subjects ranging from Nutritional Strategies to Prevent Diabetes with our Chief Medical Advisor Adi Benito, Herbs in the Kitchen with Tish Streeten and Understanding the Biochemistry of Food with Professor James Martiney, and many more.
Many of the people whom you’ve attracted to Suppers continue with us and we have a lot of new interested people as well and for that we’re grateful. We are collaborating with Kim Rizk of Jammin’ Crepes and NOFA-NJ on their “Cooking with Your CSA” series and Kim Booker is leading us in exploring collaborative relationships within diverse communities. We will restart the search for a Home for Suppers – as we get a better understanding of the needs of Suppers in the new hybrid world of in-person and virtual offerings. Don’t worry, cooking will always be front and center.
On that note you’d be pleased to know that many people have been doing a LOT more home cooking these days. We have fond memories of cooking and sharing information with you in your garden and in your kitchen. You made the world a better place and we are committed to continuing to build the movement to teach people how to Eat for Their Health.
When are the pea shoots coming up? We see a bowl of cauliflower and pea shoot soup in our future.
We love and miss you.
On behalf of the entire Suppers Community,
Marion Reinson, Executive Director
Fiona Capstick, RN, DE, CIHC, Board President
Herb Mertz, Board Secretary
Karen Baldino, Board Treasurer
Adi Benito, MD – Member Board of Trustees and Chief Medical Advisor
Kim Booker – Member Board of Trustees
Shipra Mitra – Member Board of Trustees
Karen Rose Tank, MS, CHC – Member Board of Trustees
February 2021 Recap
We are wrapping up a month of content focused on Heart Health. If you haven’t already, sign up to receive our e-newsletter — full of events, recipes, farm features, gardening tips, and stories about Suppers members who have turned around their health and their lives.
Here’s a look back at this month’s featured content:
I Can't Believe It's Not Fried Chicken
Let's Talk About Heart Health
Marcia's Story: My Affair with Vegetables
The Benefits of Breakfast
Featured Resource: Fiber For Heart Health (Harvard Health)
Featured Resource: Flax vs. Chia (One Green Planet)
Featured Resource: Nutritional Properties of Microgreens (NIH)
Webinar: Loving Kindness Meditation (Jamie Mullen)
Webinar: Making Your Own Herbal Remedies (Tish Streeten)
Farm Spotlight: Rolling Hills Farm
Farm Spotlight: Two River Mushroom
Farm Spotlight: Ramblin’ Sol Farm
Farm Spotlight: Blooming Glen Farm
Next month, we’ll shift our focus to Healthy Weight Management.
January 2021 Recap
We are wrapping up a month of content focused on the concept of being "your own best ally in health." If you haven’t already, sign up to receive our e-newsletter — full of events, recipes, farm features, gardening tips, and stories about Suppers members who have turned around their health and their lives.
Here’s a look back at this month’s featured content:
Your Best Ally in Health
A Whole Person Approach
Spring Clean Your Body
Sheron’s Story: Ground Floor
Nana’s Story: Experiments
Featured Resource: Beat the Winter Blues (Consumer Reports)
Featured Resource: January Garden Tips (Rutgers Master Gardeners)
Webinar: Eating to Prepare for Spring (Andrew Appello)
Webinar: Intermittent Fasting (Adi Benito)
Farm Spotlight: Jeff’s Organic Produce
Farm Spotlight: Rolling Hills Farm
Farm Spotlight: Marchese Farm
Coming Together at the Suppers Table (November 2020)
Dear Suppers Community,
This week’s weather was a much-needed breath of fresh air. The events of 2020—from the pandemic and the spotlight on racial injustice to the heated election cycle—make it clear that there is much work to be done to help bridge the divide and model the behavior we want for ourselves and hope to see in others. While there is much work to do, we are filled with hope for tomorrow.
We’ve been hearing a lot about unity and healing lately, and there is a meaningful message for the Suppers community as well. It’s time to come together, support each other and create harmony in our lives and at the Suppers table. Being able to produce our programs virtually, means our global community is steadily growing. Now more than ever, we feel that good health should be accessible to all, including those with differing perspectives.
Everyone has a seat at the table and food brings us together.
Suppers exists to support all communities, and to share information about the importance of healthy eating and fueling your body and your brain by eating real food. It is our goal to bring as many people as possible to the table—to meet, cook, eat and learn.
We will be focusing on the subjects of Mood and Food this month and Nutritional Harm Reduction in December. We know that the holiday season often brings challenges with it—from the struggle to resist the urge to eat or drink “just one more” or wonder how we will get through the evening without incident—we hope that you look to Suppers for support. Our webinars cover many different topics. Below is a list of those available on our website.
- Mindful Eating with Dr. Joseph Wieliczko – understanding the different types of hunger, managing cravings, and more
- Yoga for Digestion workshops with Jamie Mullen
- Biochemistry of Food with James Martiney – understanding how our bodies process fats, sugars and carbohydrates
- Preserving Workshop by Master Food Preserver Kim Rizk
- A series of 6 webinars by our own Dr. Adi Benito on thyroid health, nutritional strategies to address issues with Inflammation, diabetes, menopause, stress and the effects of sugar on the brain
- And, a soon-to-be published webinar with Dr. Shawn Tepper-Levine on Neuroplasticity – you can change your brain.
As we gather together, in whatever way possible this holiday season, we are filled with gratitude and hope and look forward to seeing you at the Suppers table.
Marion Reinson, Executive Director
The Suppers Programs
PS – I wanted to share that I made my first Magic Muffin in a mug. And, it was indeed, almost magic—using whole ingredients, one bowl and a mug—a delicious and nutritious treat. I will be prepping the dry ingredients in advance to make this even easier. There will be many magic muffins in my future!
October 2020 Recap
We are wrapping up a month of content focused on Gut Health. If you haven’t already, sign up to receive our e-newsletter — full of events, recipes, farm features, gardening tips, and stories about Suppers members who have turned around their health and their lives.
Here’s a look back at this month’s featured content:
Why Gut Health Matters
One Size Doesn’t Fit All: Microbiome Diversity and the PREDICT Study
Susan’s Story: Raw Inspiration
Digestive Strategies to Support a Healthy Gut
Featured Resource: Smarter Fall Cleanup (New York Times)
Featured Resource: Pumpkin's Health Benefits (Consumer Reports)
Featured Resource: Winter Squash 101 (Tufts University Health & Nutrition)
Featured Resource: Gut-Brain Axis (Institute for Functional Medicine)
Webinar: Yoga for Healthy Digestion (Jamie Mullen)
Webinar: Eating for Winter Immunity (Andrew Appello)
Webinar: We Are What We Eat (Aly Cohen)
Webinar: Nutritional Strategies for Gastrointestinal Health (Julie Pantelick)
Farm Spotlight: Zell’s Farm
Farm Spotlight: Blue Moon Acres
Farm Spotlight: D&V Organics
Farm Spotlight: Bhumi Growers
Next month, we’ll shift our focus to another one of Suppers’ core concepts and discuss Mood and Food.
Thank you for attending "A Seat at the Table" (October 2020)
We hope that this event was meaningful to you and that you learned something new about cooking and eating for your health. Our goal is always to empower people to explore and discover ways to feed themselves in mind and body. Our wish is that you become inspired to see yourself as your own best ally in your health. For a list of recipes and resources mentioned in tonight's program, click here.
This event wouldn’t have been possible without the passion and dedication of Suppers' board members, our production team—Alison Cote and Perry Jones, and our community partners—Jammin’ Crepes co-founder Kim Rizk and Raoul and Luke Momo of the Terra Momo Restaurant Group.
This is a turning point for The Suppers Programs, as we build on the rich, lasting legacy created by our founder, Dorothy Mullen, and transition into a future that has already proven to be a challenging test of our creativity. Although we find ourselves at a time of physical distance, we know that our virtual programs offer the information and connections that we need to guide you along your health journey—and we are preparing for when we are able to meet, eat and learn in person again.
We hope we can count on your financial support as we continue to develop meaningful programs that now can be delivered beyond the Central Jersey region. In addition, we are continuing with our matching gift campaign to fund a Home for Suppers. Please consider making your tax-deductible donation HERE.
Fiona Capstick, RN, DE, CIHC, Board President
Marion Reinson, Executive Director
Karen Rose Tank, Chair, Annual Appeal Committee
Kim Booker to MC "A Seat at the Table" Event (October 2020)
The Suppers Programs is pleased to announce that board member and Black community leader Kim Booker will MC its “A Seat at the Table” event on October 29. The free virtual event includes guest speakers, a live Q&A, and an optional eat-along featuring healthy Suppers-friendly meals available to order from Jammin’ Crepes and Terra Momo Restaurant Group.
“It’s an honor and a privilege to be a part of this,” said Booker. “I’m excited to connect with people virtually, when getting together physically is hard to do right now. This is an opportune time to come to the Suppers table. We can do so much more together than we can apart.”
Registration for "A Seat at the Table" is Open! (October 2020)
We’ve officially opened registration for “A Seat at the Table” with the Suppers Programs. We can’t wait to have you join us on Thursday, October 29, from 6:00-7:30 p.m., for a program that includes guest speakers, an eat-along featuring healthy Suppers-friendly meals from our community partners at Jammin’ Crepes and Terra Momo Restaurant Group, and more! For more information, click here.
September 2020 Recap
We are wrapping up a month of content focused on How You Feel is Data.® If you haven’t already, sign up to receive our e-newsletter — full of events, recipes, farm features, gardening tips, and stories about Suppers members who have turned around their health and their lives.
Here’s a look back at this month’s featured content:
Benefits of Fresh and Dried Herbs
How You Feel Is Data® and Blood Sugar Regulation
Lora’s Story: Chili For Breakfast?
Blood Sugar Regulation and the Glycemic Index
What’s the Scoop on Poop?
Wolfram’s Story: It's About Love
Featured Video: Personalized Nutrition (Weizmann Institute)
Featured Video: A Way Out of Food Racism and Poverty (Dr. Mark Hyman)
Webinar: Sugar on the Brain (Dr. Adi Benito)
Webinar: Bitters, the Antidote to Sugar (Herbalist Tish Streeten)
Farm Spotlight: Greenflash Farm
Farm Spotlight: Chickadee Creek Farm
Farm Spotlight: Davidson Exotic Mushrooms
Farm Spotlight: Drop the Beet Farm
Farm Spotlight: Pineland Farms
Next month, we’ll shift our focus to another one of Suppers’ core concepts: Gut Health.
PACF COVID-19 Relief & Recovery Fund (September 2020)
From Sept. 23 Press Release
When schools and businesses in Princeton and surrounding communities started closing their doors earlier this year due to the COVID-19 pandemic, Marion Reinson, Executive Director of The Suppers Programs, began looking for ways the organization could better support the community during this unprecedented time.
“As an organization that is focused primarily on educating people on ways to cook and eat whole food to support their health and help prevent disease, we saw an urgent, unfulfilled need in our community that was directly aligned with our mission and vision,” said Reinson.
Beginning in March, the organization’s board decided that a percentage of all donations made in support of its virtual programming and webinars would be shared 50/50 with the Princeton Area Community Foundation’s (PACF) COVID Relief & Recovery Fund. This special fund was created to provide support to community organizations actively engaged in addressing critical issues like food and housing insecurity, reduced and lost income, child care and behavioral and mental health needs.
“We know that we can help people improve their health if they have access to a few basics: access to healthy, whole food ingredients and a place to cook and have a seat at a table. We felt the need to support people in this way,” said Reinson.
In total, Suppers was able to provide more than $1,200 dollars to PACF’s COVID-19 Relief & Recovery Fund.
“We appreciate the importance of supporting each other during this unprecedented time,” said Fiona Capstick, Suppers Board President. “Sharing our organization’s fundraising with the COVID-19 Relief Fund is aligned with our values as an organization, as we feel it helps those among us who have been disproportionately affected by the pandemic. A heartfelt thank you to our Suppers community for taking part in this meaningful contribution."
For more information about PACF’s COVID-19 Relief & Recovery Fund, click here.
A Seat at the Table (June 2020)
It took some time to write this note. To say that we are living in uncertain times with a pandemic and great unrest across our nation is a drastic understatement. Yet, in spite of the threat of transmitting a deadly virus, Americans and people around the world are still demonstrating against racial injustice and police brutality in unprecedented numbers. In small towns and big cities alike, people are giving voice to the grief and anger that generations of black Americans have suffered at the hands of an unjust system. We imagine that if the threat of the virus was not upon us, we would see exponentially greater numbers of peaceful demonstrators.
It is horrifying that George Floyd, Ahmaud Arbery and Breonna Taylor and too many others all lost their lives – because they were Black. The combination of grief, anger and determination is a powerful thing. In the past, America has made attempts to change – we’ve changed laws, we’ve changed leaders – it’s time to change minds. It’s time to work on opening minds to the understanding that a race of people cannot be superior or inferior – we are all human. There is much work to be done before we can finally secure lasting change.
At Suppers, we are all too aware that it’s people of color who are disproportionately affected by chronic disease including Type 2 Diabetes, Hypertension, Alzheimer’s Disease and Obesity. And, the Covid-19 pandemic has amplified the disparities across minority populations due to food deserts and lack of adequate access to health care and health education.
Our mission is to prevent and reduce the impact of chronic disease while addressing these health disparities. We know that this is not an easy task and requires commitment on everyone’s part. Deeply rooted in the Suppers’ culture is the importance of providing an environment of nonjudgement when it comes to a person’s relationship with food; as we believe it is difficult for a person to learn, heal and grow when they feel judged.
Some programs are in place, but we know we need to do more. We are committed to continue having conversations and explore ways to further support minority communities – sharing information about the importance of healthy eating and fueling your body and your brain – by eating real food. It is our goal to bring as many people as possible to the table – to meet, cook, eat and learn. At Suppers, we feel that good health should be accessible to all and everyone should have a seat at the table. Black Lives Matter.
Marion Reinson, Executive Director, and the Suppers Board of Trustees: Karen Baldino, Adi Benito, Kim Booker, Fiona Capstick, Herb Mertz, Karen Rose Tank
An Update from Our Executive Director (November 2019)
Dear Friends of Suppers,
I sometimes enjoy a rainy day -- that is, if I get to stay home. It gives me time to slow down and reflect. During my time reflecting this past Sunday morning, I realized that we’ve been so busy making plans and running Suppers that we haven’t been keeping you up to date. The list below is some of what we’ve been up to; please know that we are grateful for your interest in Suppers.
The Suppers Programs
Signature Suppers Meetings: We take a practical approach; cooking and guiding people in the kitchen to learn how easy it can be to prepare whole, delicious, healthy food. And, we’re pleased to say that we are running almost 20 Signature Suppers meetings each month. Several are held at The Suppers Kitchen and most others are held in people’s homes and places of worship around Central Jersey. For those of you familiar with Suppers, we’re calling the regular “meal-centered” meeting a “Signature Meeting.” These meetings are scripted, and peer-led by trained volunteer facilitators. We make every effort to keep these meetings affordable so that more people may have a seat at the table. Pricing for these Signature Meetings has been unchanged. The price covers the cost of the ingredients plus one dollar per plate to go to Suppers. Meetings average $12-$20 per person depending on the menu and number of guests. More people, lower cost per plate.
A Home for Suppers -- The Kitchen in Skillman: With Dorothy’s diagnosis came the reality that we no longer have access to Dorothy’s home, free of charge, to hold meetings and workshops. Through the generosity of Dor’s friend, Jenny Hartshorne, we have moved into an interim home at what used to be the Blawenburg Café. Rent is not charged, but we do cover expenses and investments in the start-up of this operation. As this location is temporary, we are going to initiate a search for A Home for Suppers shortly. We are SO grateful to have been given access to this space for holding meetings, programs and workshops.
Hands-On Workshops and Educational Presentations: We follow the “teach a person to fish” philosophy of addressing health concerns. These programs are informed by the latest research and carefully designed where participants learn by doing (and, of course, tasting). We are building the schedule for the next few months. These workshops give participants the opportunity to learn, cook and taste the subject matter. Cost averages $50 and this covers the instructor and high quality materials with a minor amount left for Suppers. Note: Most workshops break even with eight participants. We can only run workshops if we have enough participants to cover our costs.
A Taste of Suppers: Tasting is believing. Which is why one of our priorities is to get more of these introductory programs on our (and your) calendar. Dates and locations to be announced.
Update on Dor: The question many of you have is, “How is Dorothy?” True to form, Dorothy is powering through and sharing information about her personal approach to dying -- so that others may learn from her experience. A visit with her on Sunday showed that Dor is slowing down significantly. However, she’s continuously writing and has installed bird feeders at her windows so that if she cannot get outside to see the birds, the birds can come to her --and they do.
The Fund for Suppers -- Help us to “Honor the Inspiration”: We are preparing to launch our Annual Fund Campaign, "Honor the Inspiration," so that we can continue the groundbreaking work of Dorothy Mullen and provide for the Future of Suppers. We no longer have the luxury of having an organization run by a founder who did not take compensation, nor did she charge for the use of her home. The Fund for Suppers will enable us to continue and grow and support the commitment to training facilitators, and maintaining a staff and location. We are seeking donations, partnerships and grants to support The Suppers Programs’ mission to continue to provide these life-changing meetings, workshops and events.
Suppers Welcomes New Leadership Team (October 2019)
We are pleased to welcome Fiona Capstick (pictured right) as our new President of the Board and Marion Reinson (pictured left) as our new Executive Director. The two have been working tirelessly to build a path forward for Suppers. Fiona brings great depth of knowledge to Suppers from the practitioner side with more than 25 years’ experience in health care, in both acute and chronic settings. She practiced as a Registered Nurse in her native country, England, and in Australia as a Diabetes Nurse Consultant, Educator, and Clinical Study Coordinator through the University of Sydney. She is a graduate of Duke Integrative Medicine Health Coaching Program and has her own health coaching practice working with clients on behavior change. Capstick has served on the Board of Trustees for the past two years as Vice President and also facilitates a Signature Suppers meeting.
Marion brings a structured approach to an organization that has been operating for almost 15 years through the tremendous efforts of Suppers’ Founder Dorothy Mullen. Everything she has learned and worked on over the past 25 years has prepared her to run a nimble organization like Suppers. Marion has operated her own business consulting practice, To The Point, LLC, since 2004. Her expertise lies in designing business growth and marketing strategies, and defining precisely outlined outcomes. Marion fell in love with The Suppers Programs after attending the Garden Workshop Series, and then became a member of the Board of Trustees. For the past two years, has been working with Dor pro bono on developing a sustainable and fundable strategic plan for Suppers, a plan that will ensure that it thrives beyond the support of Dor.
Suppers Has a Temporary New Home (September 2019)
Thanks to the tremendous generosity of Jenny Hartshorne, Suppers now has a place to call home. We are now running Signature Meetings and Workshops out of our commercial kitchen at the former Blawenburg Cafe on the corner of 518 and 601 (Great Road). Want to check out the new space? Sign up for one of our innovative Suppers Workshops! Everything from Green Cleaning to Flavor Balancing, Teas & Tinctures, Healthy Holiday Cooking, Dairy Alternatives and Cashew Mastery!
End of Life: Plannning is Everything (August 2019)
This end-of-life literacy event featured spokespeople with messages regarding palliative and hospice care, estate planning, our legal rights as of August 1 under the New Jersey’s Aid in Dying for the Terminally Ill act, and how to prepare ourselves and our loved ones.
Dor Mullen Honored by BOE for Princeton Public Schools Impact (July 2019)
At the July BOE meeting for Princeton Public Schools, Board Members Jess Deutsch and Beth Behrend made a proclamation of gratitude to Dor Mullen, highlighting the endless ways she has positively impacted the school district and beyond. A fully packed room listened as Ms. Deutsch and Ms. Behrend shared the Board's sentiments, including "Dorothy Mullen's service at Riverside [Elementary School] has inspired the growth of garden education in public and private schools throughout Princeton, New Jersey and the Northeast" and "Dorothy Mullen has wholeheartedly shared her vision, expertise and time with educators, parents, students and community members." A short Public Comment section followed; the first community member to speak emotionally expressed her feelings: "Dorothy Mullen. How you feel is data. And there are at least 100 people in this room who feel really wonderful today because they know you. So thank you. You have influenced so many lives with your passion and your zeal and your energy, and words fail me after that." Click here to see the video recording of the BOE meeting.
Suppers Hosts Its 6th Annual Founder's Day Event (June 2019)
It was a bittersweet moment when our 6th Founder's Day celebration evolved into a festive transition to new leadership for Suppers. Our friends Carlo and Raoul Momo hosted the event at Eno Terra, which was attended by double the typical number of celebrants. "It's amazing how stage 4 cancer increases the attendance at one's Founder's Day celebration," Dor said, inviting everyone into a fullness of feeling that marked the entire evening. Lee Yonish, Interim Executive Director, gave the opening remarks; the event featured three speakers whose lives were transformed by the program; and Dor shared the origination story. Board and staff listened closely as guests shared their hopes and plans for Suppers, including an eventual bricks and mortar for our organization, with a garden that will be seeded by Dor's "mother garden." Everyone was heartened by the conversations centered around supporting Suppers and figuring out how to best fund the future. (Pictured above: Dorothy Mullen with two of her children, Claire Mullen and Max Mullen)
"Taste of Suppers" Celebrate Herbs and Spices (March 2019)
The Seventh Annual Taste of Suppers hosted herbalist and documentary film maker, Tish Streeten (pictured left), and Integrative Health and Nutrition Coach, Jenna Richardson (pictured right), for a Celebration of Herbs and Spices. Following their presentations, 30 volunteer cooks (thanks!) shared Suppers-friendly tastes: herbed almond flatbreads; frittata with Bengali spices; slaws, chickpeas and salads all dolled up with healing herbs and delicious spices; quinoa and roasted vegetables provided by Mediterra; and a wide range of Tulsi teas donated by Tish and the Whole Earth Center.
Suppers Holds Inaugural Event in Trenton (March 2019)
Suppers launches in Trenton at Bethany House of Hospitality. New programs in Princeton, Lawrenceville, and Trenton are starting now. They are supported by a grant from the Cottonwood Foundation and donors who want to promote the engagement of minorities in Suppers. Facilitator: Kim Booker. Hosts: Christina Heimann of Isles and Pastor Karen Hernandez-Granzen of Westminster Presbyterian Church. Look for us this season at the Trenton Farmers Market.
Suppers and NOFA-NJ Host Their Second Annual "Sourcing Health Locally" (September 2018)
For the second year in a row, a sold-out crowd gathered to hear about the close connections between the food system and the healthcare system. Farmers, eaters, cooks, health advocates and medical practitioners came together to discuss how food sourcing can affect the course of one's life. Keynote speaker, Kathleen DiChiara (pictured above), presented her compelling story about the "secret ingredients" that were making her family sick, which led her to transition from a high-level career at a Fortune 500 company to a career as a Functional Nutrition Practitioner with specialized training in biochemistry and individual diets for chronic conditions. A special thanks goes to The Foundation for Airway Health and all of the sponsors for this day-long event.
Suppers' Garden Hosts Its First Chef's Tour (August 2018)
Eno Terra Head Chef Coby Farrow led a chef's tour of the Suppers garden at Dor's house. He described his process of creating a green goddess salad dressing with whatever Nature makes available now: rosemary, chives, and lemon basil (plus avocado, olive oil, and a light vinegar). Also, Chef Allie O'Brien taught Suppers garden program participants to make sugarless peach jam and peach gazpacho.
Princeton University Student Covers Suppers for her Senior Journalism Project (May 2018)
Thanks to PU Senior, Cindy Liu, for spending some time with Suppers this spring and producing both this excellent piece, "Fighting Sugar with a Knife," and this wonderful video (click on the photo below) about the program!
The Princeton Public Library Hosts the Sixth Annual Taste of Suppers: Motivating Healthy Change (March 2018)
Suppers welcomed Dr. Mark Woodford, a licensed professional counselor from The College of New Jersey, for this fascinating evening about behavior change. When our efforts to help ourselves or loved ones change unhealthy behaviors backfire, it may be because we have false assumptions about how to support the change process. Dr. Woodford presented the fundamental truths about change processes and introduced the principles of Motivational Interviewing (MI), which is a model used in public health and addictions counseling to help people whose improvement requires behavior change. Of course, attendees sampled delicious Suppers food after the lecture and role-play demonstration.
Farmer physician Ron Weiss, MD of Ethos Farm Presents at Our Community Partner, Sante Integrative Pharmacy (February 2018)
In his presentation, "Ten Reasons to Go Plant Based," Dr. Weiss discussed the benefits and answered personal questions about nutrition, health and life on the country’s first working farm-based medical practice. Dr. Weiss shared his experiences and presented evidence demonstrating how changing to a plant-based diet and lifestyle can not only optimize our health but also help to prevent and reverse aging. Dr. Weiss is a botanist, board-certified internist and Assistant Professor of Clinical Medicine at Rutgers New Jersey Medical School. He is founder of Ethos Health in Long Valley, NJ.
"Soulful Sunday Suppers" Launches (February 2018)
Women come together for a new meeting, "Soulful Sunday Suppers," to create a Suppers that supports them in their healthy lifestyle choices. African Americans are at greater risk for many of the chronic illnesses that whole foods can help reverse. Some of our members started this new meeting for women who want support living in their intentions for healthy eating and strategizing how to get loved ones to participate.
A HUGE Thanks to CHOPT for Partnering With Suppers for "Chopt Gives" (November 2017)
Chopt Creative Salad Co., for its grand opening at the Princeton Shopping Center on November 6, chose The Suppers Programs as its charitible partner for the day. During both lunch and dinner, guests received a complimentary salad with any monetary donation to Suppers. Impressively, the new Chopt location served almost 400 delicious salads without a hitch. Suppers is grateful to have a new partner in the community.
Suppers Partners with NOFA-NJ to Bring Day-Long "Sourcing Health Locally" Event to Princeton, NJ (September 2017)
A sold-out room of 150 people gathered on Sunday, September 10 at the Suzanne Patterson Building to listen to health practitioners and farmers collaboratively examine key questions that are relevant to both health care and agricultural practices. A letter to Town Topics from a local doctor who attended the event underscores its success: "... what we eat and how our food is raised matters as much (if not more) to our health as having a top-notch health care system. What an ingenious idea to bring farmers and physicians together to address our most stubborn health issues... I would like to express my gratitude to our hosts for creating this inspired forum..."
Spring Vegan Cleanse Begins (April 2017)
In the spring of 2017, Macrobiotic Suppers facilitator Pat Palmer (pictured above) and Dor Mullen organized a seven-day vegan cleanse. This video (separated into Part 1 and Part 2) is the introductory description of the cleanse given at the Whole Earth Center in Princeton. Instead of fasting, this cleanse was about eating only raw vegetables and fruits for up to a week. Participants get delicious nutriments throughout the day, including juices, smoothies and salads. A supporting web site and moderated Facebook group were used in the first sponsored cleanse, and are still available to those who would like to try this type of cleanse in the future. This talk provided details about:
- which vegetables may be difficult to digest in raw form (some may surprise you!)
- how to prepare
- sample menus
- possible effects (easy and otherwise)
- variations for people with special concerns or intolerances, and
- how to get and share support with others during the experiment.
Masala Suppers Launches (February 2017)
This new Suppers group is made up mostly of American and European women who love Indian food and Indian women who enjoy sharing what they know. At each meeting someone will demonstrate a preparation -- either Indian or American fare. Suppers uses exclusively unprocessed food in our meals. There is no wheat or sugar, only fresh, mostly organic vegetables and some locally sourced protein for those who want eggs or meat.
Taste of Suppers at the Princeton Public Library Features Speakers on Blood Sugar and Diabetes (December, 2016)
Delicious solutions to managing blood sugar, that was the theme of Suppers' largest event this year, the fifth annual Taste of Suppers at the Princeton Public Library. Dr. Maria (Adi) Benito-Herrero presented on how to preserve function at every stage of diabetes. Two Suppers members, Karen Rose Tank and Janet Zondag, shared with great candor and humor their journeys with diabetes and food. Twenty volunteer cooks -– mostly Suppers facilitators –- filled our plates with the food that provides delicious solutions to managing your blood sugar, ranging from raw vegan to Paleo fare.
Dor Presents at the AAPMD's Annual Airway Summit (September 2016)
What's new at Suppers is collaboration! Dor Mullen, Suppers Founder, was invited to speak at the annual conference of the American Academy of Physiological Medicine and Dentistry in Tucson, Arizona. She had to do a crash course in "airway health" -- which involves everything patients, doctors and dentists need to do to keep us breathing optimally. You might wonder what that has to do with Suppers. Interestingly, whenever you see children with ADHD that's driven by poor breathing, or adults with apnea, or anyone who experiences obstructed breathing for any reason, they almost always end up addicted to carbohydrates! Hence the invitation to Dor to talk about how Suppers supports behavior change, especially around eating. Suppers shared space with its friends, Jacqui Bishop and Lisa Feiner, founders of Sharp Again Naturally (pictured below with Dor). SAN provides educational materials for our Suppers meeting focused on brain health.
Taste of Suppers at the Princeton Public Library Draws a Record Crowd for "Food Immunity" Panel (December, 2015)
Thanking the tax payers of Princeton for the use of the Princeton Public Library community room, Dorothy Mullen welcomed around 150 people to an evening of talks about cancer and tastes of foods that support the immune system. Mullen said, "Our purpose was to introduce the community to deliciously applied science," and noted that her organization seeks to re-establish home cooking as a critical point of a health-promoting lifestyle. "When food drives disease, food has to be part of the solution too," Mullen added. Thirty volunteers donated foods matched to the theme of the presenters, recipes made from fresh, mostly organic ingredients. The public was invited to taste everything and join the growing local movement of people who take delicious home food preparation very seriously.
Suppers' Value as "Applied Science" is Recognized by the Institute for Responsible Nutrition (December 2015)
Following a visit last week by Wolfram Alderson, Executive Director of the Institute for Responsible Nutrition (IRN), Suppers received the following endorsement: "I want you to know that The Suppers Programs is one of the best examples of applied science I have ever seen. The scientific method is basically defined as a method of research in which a problem is identified, relevant data is gathered, a hypothesis is formulated from this data, and the hypothesis is empirically tested." Alderson remarked that finding Suppers was like finding the Holy Grail of the real food movement, a program that delivers diet and lifestyle change that people with metabolic disease find so elusive.
In October, IRN had called out Suppers as an example of "solving for food system change." And: "There are various models for creating food system change –- business models, organizational models, academic models, etc. The Suppers Programs champions the community model –- eschewing approaches that monetize change." The IRN (now merged with Eat REAL®) was founded by Robert Lustig, MD, whose viral YouTube video, "Sugar: The Bitter Truth" has over 6,000,000 views.
Suppers is Awarded the "Healthy Food Community Friends Award" (November/December 2015)
In honor of American Diabetes Month, the ADA's Diabetes Forecast magazine published a short list of organizations and individuals who are fighting to stop diabetes "through access to healthful food and nutrition education." The Suppers Programs received this honor among roughly a dozen recipients! Facilitator Karen Rose Tank: "We bring recipes on paper to life, thus empowering participants to make these low-carb, blood sugar–stabilizing recipes on their own at home.” Read more on Diabetes Forecast's web site or in its print magazine.
Suppers Launches its Blog, The Purple Apron (November 2015)
Dor Mullen, Suppers Founder, and her accomplice, Chef Allie O'Brien, have come together to welcome you to virtual Suppers meetings through a blog, The Purple Apron. Here you'll find inspiring stories plus recipes, cooking instructions and beautiful photos to go along with them. Members will be sharing their experiments on finding the right or wrong foods for them. You, too, can pass along to us your stories of success, failure, and kitchen dreams and nightmares.
Press Release (November 2015)
Central Jersey's Suppers Programs: Just What the Doctor Ordered: Program Wins Award from American Diabetes Association, Survey Reveals Participants Follow Healthier Lifestyles
PRINCETON, NJ -- As the nation becomes increasingly focused on healthy lifestyles, hundreds of people in Central New Jersey are living healthier lives, thanks to The Suppers Programs, a grassroots organization promoting healthy cooking... Read full press release.
Suppers Announces Results from its Member Survey (September, 2015)
From its first-ever member survey, Suppers was pleased to learn that its mission and priciples are resonating with members, as more than two-thirds of respondents said they joined the program to improve overall health through learning to cook within a non-judgmental and supportive environment. To learn more about what Suppers members reported in this study, see our Special Edition newsletter that details its findings.