TAMPA, Fla. — During the pandemic, Hillsborough County Aging Services started their own online cooking show to help seniors eat healthier by learning to cook their own meals.
The program, "Eat Well, Age Well," has slowly built up a loyal fan base, as viewers try things in the kitchen they never thought of before.
Hillsborough County Dietician Brian Taylor isn’t trying to compete with the Food Network. In fact, it’s the exact opposite.
“If you watch some of these fancy cooking shows they have so many great recipes but these ingredients are very fancy that you might only use once, and more or less expensive,” said Taylor, who hosts the show.
Taylor’s goal is five or fewer ingredients that are most likely already in your pantry.
“Very simple recipes that everybody can do, try to keep the recipes under $5 when possible, it’s an interactive fun way to get our clients involved in cooking,” said Taylor.
Eat Well, Age Well airs at 11 a.m. on the third Friday of every month. It’s specifically aimed to help seniors, living alone, who may have fallen into some unhealthy habits.
“Being by yourself or as we get older sometimes we tend to eat a little more fast food or processed food which is high in salt, high in sugar, high in fat,” said Taylor.
When Taylor isn’t telling his dad jokes, he’s updating his viewers on what makes the meals taste good, but even more importantly, why they are good for you.
“You’re never too old to start eating healthy,” said Taylor.
Whether it’s the food, the chef hats, or maybe the singing, Taylor is gaining popularity. During any given segment there could be up to 60 people watching, like Carolyn Stafford.
“When his presentation is over, ‘we want more, we want more,’ we really love him, we love what he does for us,” said Stafford.
Taylor also encourages feedback from the viewers, especially when they laugh at his jokes.
“Almost like family, sitting around your kitchen table watching you cook, and just contributing, they tell stories about what they made and it’s just a good way to get people involved,” said Taylor
Eat Well, Age Well is done over Zoom and is free to watch. For more information on how to get the link go to HCFLGov.net/Aging or call 813-272-5250.