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  • Writer's pictureNicole Will

A Caregivers Cookbook

A Caregivers Cookbook: Bringing Your Loved One into the Kitchen with Melissa Bernstein, OT.

Food and conversation play a substantial role in our lives. What happens when we bring our loved ones into the kitchen?

We are continuing our conversation today with Melissa Bernstein. She is an author and occupational therapist as well as the Founder of Dynamic Companies which provides healthcare clinical and operational consulting to a wide variety of healthcare organizations. She brings 35 years of clinician, consulting, and geriatric rehabilitation experience. We look at why the Power of 5 Test Kitchen Cookbook- Caregiver Edition is different from other cookbooks and how we can successfully bring our loved ones into the kitchen for a meaningful experience.

Melissa shares about:

  • How the Power of 5 Test Kitchen began and the connection to The Power of 5: The Ultimate Formula for Longevity & Remaining Youthful

  • What collaboration looks like for those with neurodegenerative disorders and the caregiver

  • What happens when we bring our loved ones into the kitchen with us and how we can shift our mindset around creating meals together

  • Why is my loved ones appetite decreasing and other caregiver questions

  • Easy and actionable steps for those that don't know where to start

Melissa Bernstein, OT, FAOTA, 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.

In 1999, she was one of the early adapters when she launched Dynamic Learning Online, Inc. It was one of the first learning management companies to provide courses online (E-Learning) for healthcare professionals to secure their needed or desired education to meet licensure and certification requirements.

In 2006, at the AOTA national conference, Mrs. Bernstein was awarded the AOTA honor of a Fellow of Occupational Therapy, for the Advancement of OT’s in Private Practice. Melissa has developed many clinical educational offerings online, published articles and co-authored several books.

In 2015 Melissa transitioned the mission of Dynamic Learning Online, Inc. to Dynamic Learning/AGE GRACEFULLY® supporting Dr. David Bernstein, a leading Geriatrician, author and speaker, to educate and provide resources to enhance health and wellness.

In 2017, with the publication of Dr. Bernstein’s third book, The Power of 5 - The Ultimate Formula for Longevity and Remaining Youthful, Melissa’s direction was clear…to promote and advance the Power of 5 Principles for a healthy lifestyle through healthy cooking and eating.

In 2018, The Power of 5 Test Kitchen took flight incorporating Part 2 of Dr. Bernstein’s Power of 5 book, Putting Healthy Eating into Practice. Melissa began food blogging on various health and nutrition topics as they related to the recipes she posts each month on their website. Her recipes are unique as they offer variations - “Melissa’s Modifications” following each recipe to meet an individual’s eating lifestyles (i.e. vegan, vegetarian, lactose or gluten-free, pescatarian, etc..). Continuing her passion for cooking, in 2019, Melissa became a certified chef through Forks Over Knives & Rouxbe Cooking Academy.

Most recently, Melissa developed a meaningful instructional video program entitled: Purposeful Engagement through Food and Meal Preparation for Caregivers and those with Dementia.

This program provides guided activities of engagement that are safe and beneficial to the care recipients and the Caregiver.

As a companion to the course, Melissa published The Power of 5 Test Kitchen Cookbook Caregiver Edition as a support to those who have challenges in keeping the care recipient engaged in purposeful activities throughout the day. This cookbook can help the caregiver and the care recipient stay healthy and connected through food and bring hope and fulfillment in the kitchen.

The cookbook is full of easy recipes, helpful hints, and the tools needed to promote safe and meaningful engagement for those with those challenged with an illness. Melissa believes “your kitchen can be a place where fun and health flourish, no matter the challenges you face”.

Melissa can be reached at her office in Oldsmar, Florida at:

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We are not medical professionals and are not providing any medical advice. If you have any medical questions, we recommend that you talk with a medical professional of your choice. willGather has taken care in selecting its speakers but the opinions of our speakers are theirs alone. Thank you for your continued interest in our podcasts.

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Nicole Will is our host and founder of willGather.

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