"I think it's so much work and it was so horrible," he said. "I always thought that taste like cardboard food vegetarian."
Cooking classes help Dr. Li opened his eyes and expand the palate – but they are not taught in the cooking school or culinary institute. Dr. Li, specializing in geriatrics, learn to cook healthy herb like salmon Burgers and tofu chocolate pie at the University of Massachusetts medical school.
The school is one of the few that offer doctors a chance to test their skills in the kitchen with cooking classes geared towards them. The goal is to provide a practical skills to prepare healthy meals so that they can better advise patients about improving their diet, said Barbara Olendzki, RD, MPH, Assistant Professor and Director of nutrition at the UMass Medical School.
"One of the biggest obstacles we have a sense of, and the doctor is no exception," said Olendzki. "When doctors recommend the dietary changes to patient, often it is seen as something that was seized. Rather than seeing it as a punishment, we'd like to get them excited and sees it as an opportunity. "
Teaching doctors to cooking also makes them more likely to eat healthy meals for yourself and become more proactive in advising patients, said David Eisenberg, MD, Professor Bernard Osher distinguished medicine at Harvard Medical School.