Meet the Teacher: Dr. Stephen Perry, Coda Health Kitchen

When Dr. Stephen Perry founded Dental Health Colorado almost ten years ago, he had more than just clean teeth in mind.  He envisioned a dental practice that went beyond brushing and flossing to incorporate a more holistic approach that would take a patient’s overall health into account.

Dr. Perry knew that to spread his approach to health, he would need to educate his patients, so he enlisted the help of David Canter to organize workshops that would not only inform his patients about the whole-body benefits of improved health, but show them how to incorporate it in their everyday lives.

Because he wanted his wellness classes to be fun, he started with one of the best parts to healthy living: delicious food. He created Coda Health Kitchen to host regular, interactive cooking classes. In some sessions, the instructor pairs a PowerPoint presentation with tasty samples of the healthy foods recommended in the demonstration. Other sessions are cooking classes where instructors demonstrate recipes, and bring the students together for a group meal. In both cases, the effect on students is profound. David explains, “You’re compelled to make a change because you’ve experienced it yourself.”

David manages the scheduling and marketing for Coda Health Kitchen, but he hired three outside professional culinary instructors to design and lead the classes. These instructors greet his dental patients with a freshly-made smoothie when they enter his office. It provides the opportunity for patients to discuss nutrition with the teachers, and sign up for a cooking class while they wait for their appointment. The classes themselves are filmed, so that David can screen them in his waiting room and post them on his site. A patient can be inspired by a course before, during and after attending one.

And the project is only growing.

In addition to the current one-time class model, Coda Health Kitchen’s success led instructors to develop multi-week programs, and programs people can do themselves. The credit goes to the community fostered by Coda Health Kitchen’s classes. Individuals inspired by the classes are sharing it outside the practice. And as the community spreads, so too does Dr. Perry’s good advice.

If you’re interested in seeing what Coda Health Kitchen has to offer, you can check out all of their events here: http://www.eventbrite.com/org/1870598165