Parliament taking the health of MP’s seriously

Parliament’s Wellness Division has made the health of those running our country a top priority by overhauling the legislature’s menu.

In the wake of World Diabetes Month, this November, only diabetic-friendly meals will be served to parliament staff based on the nutritional guidelines set out in the Cooking from the Heart cookbook series, which has been given the stamp of approval by the Minister of Health, Aaron Motsoaledi himself.

In SA, an estimated 4 million people suffer from diabetes and many don’t even know they are at risk of the condition. Symptoms of diabetes include obesity, blurry vision, constantly feeling hungry even though you are eating, extreme fatigue and tingling or numbness in the hands and/or feet, among others.

“Nutrition plays an important part in managing diabetes and curbing other diseases of lifestyle,” says Nicole Jennings, spokesperson for wellness advocate Pharma Dynamics – the main driver behind the Cooking from the Heart campaign.

She hopes that the positive approach taken by Parliament motivates South Africans to follow suit.

Already a favourite among communities throughout South Africa, the Cooking from the Heart initiative, in partnership with the the Heart and Stroke Foundation and Centre for Diabetes and Endocrinology, is a nutritional resource which contains more than 100 traditional South African recipes that have been made heart-healthy. The third edition is specifically aimed at those with diabetes.

To follow which meals MPs will be served during World Diabetes Month visit, where recipes from the cookbook can be downloaded for free. Also follow the author of Cooking from the Heart on Facebook for healthy cooking hints and tips at

Nicole Jennings, spokesperson for Pharma Dynamics (left) and Sambona Zisile, responsible for Employee Wellness at Parliament gives the Cooking from the Heart cookbook series a thumbs-up. Meals from the heart- and diabetic-friendly recipe book (made available free to the public) will be served to MPs and Parliament staff during the month of November as a way to create broader awareness of the role that nutrition plays in curbing diseases of lifestyle, such as diabetes, which affects an estimated 4 million South Africans.


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