SUMMERSIDE – Many people who smoke are looking for a way to quit.
A new program from the Canadian Cancer Society aims to help people replace bad habits with healthy ones.
The Cooking to Quit program, launching February in Stratford and Summerside, provides smokers with training in cooking and nutrition as a way to ease the discomfort of leaving nicotine behind.
“Cooking to Quit is a tobacco cessation focused program. It is for anyone who has recently quit smoking or who is looking to quit smoking,” said Jayna Stokes, Provincial Lead for the CCS.
“One thing that a lot of people who are looking at quitting smoking are worried about is gaining weight as a result. They worry about eating more as a way of dealing with cravings. What we hope to do is to teach basic skills everyone can use in the kitchen and to provide skills on buying and preparing nutritious and affordable meals.”
Supported with a Wellness Grant from the P.E.I. Department of Health and Wellness, the Cooking to Quit program is being offered in conjunction with dieticians from the local Sobeys grocery stores.
Sessions will include an introduction to seasonings and spices available at the grocery as well.
Certified tobacco educators will also be a part of the program, providing guidance and support to people quitting smoking.
Participants will be offered a “quit kit” to assist with the process.
Sessions in Stratford will take place on Feb. 4, 11, 25 and March 4, while sessions in Summerside will take place Feb. 15, 22 and March 1 and 8.
Stokes encourages smokers and ex-smokers to contact the Canadian Cancer Society to register for the Cooking to Quit Program.
“You don’t have to come alone, bring peer support. This is something you can do together. No one is ever pointing a finger at you because you’re smoking. No one’s journey is straightforward, but this is one way we can try to help and get you on the right track.”