New Faces at the Farm - Laura
Food & Mental Health – Food is Medicine
My name is Laura, and I will be interning for Bakers’ Acres this spring. I am a Saint Ben’s sophomore studying psychology and anthropology, and now, thanks to Lisa, I will be learning the ins-and-outs of organic agriculture and how food interacts with communities and peoples’ lives.
I was pulled into a world of thinking about my food choices when my dad was diagnosed with Multiple Sclerosis and Lyme’s Disease in 2009. I witnessed over the course of seven years just how much his diet played a role in his health. After a period of uncertainty, not knowing what to do next, how to help, or whether my dad’s quality of life was inevitably going to deteriorate, my mom met Doctor Vrchota, a practitioner of integrative and holistic medicine. She switched my dad to a specialized diet (organic foods that are gluten, dairy, and red meat-free) in hopes that it would decrease inflammation in the brain. This, coupled with a year of antibiotics, drastically improved his symptoms: body aches, irritability, brain fog, and the numb, tingling sensation in his limbs. I believe food saved my dad’s life. Food became his medicine.
Having experienced food in this way, I have naturally grown curious (pun intended) about what it could do for my well-being, as well as for the well-being of others. With a background in psychology, aspiring to work in a clinical setting, I see so much potential and value in understanding how food is integrated with the mind and body. This melds with my passion for teaching yoga as well . . .
. . . which brings me to one of the main projects that I’ll be working on this season, Yoga on the Farm! This is an event hosted at Bakers’ Acres on the afternoon of Saturday, April 23rd. All are welcome, and it’s especially encouraged for those who want to stretch out in the fresh air, maybe curl up next to some cabbage, and welcome in this year’s spring. Watch the farm’s social media pages and website for more info.
I will also work in the greenhouse, tend the cows and chickens, and learn marketing and communications skills. I will share my experience testing recipes for our customers’ CSA boxes. The plan is that I’ll cook a few recipes for myself and hopefully live to tell the tale!
I am anxious to see what this opportunity has to teach me and thankful that I get to learn from Lisa and work alongside my fellow intern Lauren. I am excited that I will be getting a hands-on experience, working outdoors, and growing crops with sustainability in mind. I can’t wait to be a part of the Bakers’ Acres team.