• Rae


A Master's student at the University of Canberra studying Public Health has reached out to CPSARA to ask if our members would be interested in participating in her study. Her research project revolves around the health discrepancy between people with disabilities and those without, some of which are attributed to diet. Her literature review indicated a relationship between cooking skills with diet and health outcomes. She also found there was no literature exploring the cooking skills of people with upper limb disabilities. However, there have been some pilot studies involving participants with intellectual disabilities, cooking and nutrition education interventions with some promising results.

The ultimate aim of her project is to develop a similar program tailored to individuals with hemiparesis. In brief, the project will consist of short interviews over video conference with adults with hemiparesis about their preferences and experiences with cooking and meal preparation. Gaining insight from participants who have the lived experience of hemiparesis and working closely with them develop such a program would be more fruitful than someone simply imposing what they thought they had challenges with. Ultimately, she hope to help adults with hemiparesis take control of their diets and in turn, their health.

A bit of background about her: I am currently doing a Master's of Public Health at UC and have also completed a Bachelor of Medical Science at UTS. I have worked in Biochemistry and Sleep Science for nearly ten years and I am also a qualified Chef for 8 years. This idea first came about when discussing food and cooking with a friend who has Cerebral Palsy and hemiparesis. I asked about the kinds of foods he cooks and eats and did not realise some of the challenges he faces preparing food, often resorting to unhealthier options like take out or pre-prepared food. He ultimately inspired this research idea.

For more information, see the flyer below.

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