Runaway Spoon

No matter the accent...it's all about your heart

September 14, 2011

Keeping it healthy and upbeat at a World Bank private dining room Tuesday were cooks who gave proof that at lunch, one can eat smart and deliciously in any language.

About 130 representatives, mainly from the diplomatic community, gathered for the International Heart-Healthy Luncheon in D.C.  The health-fest was a prelude to next week’s United Nations Summit on the Prevention and Control of Non-Communicable Diseases in New York City.

And right here in D.C., five embassy chefs are cooking healthy foods all this week at the World Bank cafeteria: Lars Beese of Denmark, Ms. Frida Johansson of Sweden, Viktor Merenyi of Hungary, Ms.  Jitapa Haoharn of Thailand, and Yordan Dimitrov of Bulgaria.

Chef Lars Beese, Denmark (Photo by: Natalia Janetti) Chef Lars Beese, Denmark
“Today we are reaching out to the world” with the message that heart disease is the Number One killer of women worldwide,” said Mrs. Irene Pollin, founder and chair of the Sister to Sister Foundation, which has been in the forefront of educating women about the risks of heart disease and its link with obesity.

Women diplomats, wives of diplomats, medical doctors, politicians and other invited guests heard the message that the time-tested adage -- you are what you eat -- is pretty much on the mark.    Yogurt, nuts, fruits, whole grains, vegetables, vegetable oils, and fish and seafood are a key to a healthy diet, said Dr. Dariush Mozaffarian, associate professor at the Harvard School of Public Health’s Department of Epidemiology.  Dr. JoAnne M. Foody, director of the Cardiovascular Wellness Program at Brigham and Women’s Hospital seconded his diet message.  Dr. Esther Brimmer, assistant secretary of International Organization Affairs at the U.S. State Department, underscored the importance of the upcoming meeting in New York.  

Danish Ambassador to the U.S. Peter Taksoe-Jensen, in his welcoming address, spoke about the significance of diet for women no matter where they live on the globe

Aniko Gaal Schott (left) and Elizabeth Kucinich (Photo by: James R. Brantley) Aniko Gaal Schott (left) and Elizabeth Kucinich
Attendees included Elizabeth Kucinich of the Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine (and the wife of Rep. Dennis Kucinich, D-Ohio); interior design and PR expert Aniko Gaal Schott;  Georgetowner and photographer Didi Cutler (wife of Ambassador Walter Cutler ); WUSA channel 9 anchor JC Hayward; cardiovascular specialist Dr. Susan Bennett; Deborah Epstein, board of directors vice  president of the sponsoring Sister to Sister organization;  and Diane Flamini, the Embassy of Spain’s well-respected social secretary.

JC Hayward of WUSA Channel 9 (blue dress) surrounded by special guests (Photo by: James R. Brantley) JC Hayward of WUSA Channel 9 (blue dress) surrounded by special guests
Embassy representatives included those from Barbados, Cameroon, Hungary, Singapore, Bangladesh, Turkey, Sri Lanka, Saint Vincent and Grenadines, Russia, Macedonia, Germany, Sweden, Norway, Ghana, Fiji, Poland, Israel, Bosnia Herzegovina, Cape Verde, Ireland, Philippines, Thailand and Botswana.

 

  


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Embassy chefs cook healthy meals at World Bank for Sister to Sister events

September 2, 2011

Chefs from two embassies in Georgetown – Sweden and Thailand – join embassy chefs from Denmark, Hungary, and Bulgaria to cook heart healthy cuisine Sept. 12-16 at The World Bank headquarters as part of a workplace wellness program inspired by Irene Pollin’s foundation.

The World Bank program is in advance of the United Nations Summit on Preventing and Controlling Non-Communicable Diseases to be held Sept. 19-20 in New York.

Jitapa Haoharn, Thailand (Photo by: Sister to Sister Foundation) Jitapa Haoharn, Thailand

“Our mission is to support and educate international working women by providing heart-healthy nutrition where they work in order to help them control and prevent obesity – a major risk of heart disease and the No. 1 killer of women worldwide, " said Mrs. Pollin, founder of the Sister to Sister Foundation. 

Her organization has been in the forefront of the fight to make women more aware of the risks of heart disease and the link with obesity.

“With our new week-long series of events at the World Bank, Sister to Sister is spreading the word in international communities,” said Dr. Lotti Letanoczky, vice president for international programs at the foundation.

Frida Johansson, Sweden (Photo by: Sister to Sister Foundation) Frida Johansson, Sweden
Georgetown-based chefs participating in the Sister to Sister Global Workplace Wellness program are: Ms. Jitapa Haoharn of Thailand and Ms. Frida Johansson of Sweden.

Rounding out the chefs list are Lars Beese of Denmark (winner of the Embassy Challenge 2011), Viktor Merenyi of Hungary (winner of the Swedish Competition Price at the Embassy Chef Challenge 2010; and Yordan Dimitrov of Bulgaria.

Each chef will be assigned a lunch menu to prepare on a given day at the World Bank Group cafeterias.  These foods will be made available to employees and others who dine at the cafeterias.

On Tuesday September 13th, a private lunch hosted by the Hungarian embassy will be held at the World Bank’s private dining room for members of Congress, women ambassadors and the wives of ambassadors who act as “heart ambassadors” by raising awareness of the dangers of heart disease.

The Royal Thai Embassy also is sponsoring a performance at the World Bank luncheon by the Somapa Thai Dance Company, with a solo performance by Ms. Warin Tepayayone.  The dance company, based in the DC area, promotes Thai culture and arts in the Americas.

Somapa Thai Dance Co. (Photo by: Saul E. Gonzalez) Somapa Thai Dance Co.

Among the World Bank luncheon speakers will be Dr. Esther Brimmer, assistant secretary for International Organization Affairs at the U.S. State Department; Danish Ambassador to the U.S. Peter Taksoe-Jensen; Dr. Dariush Mozaffarian, associate professor at Harvard School of Public Health’s Department of Epidemiology; and Dr. JoAnne M. Foody, director of Cardiovascular Wellness Program at Brigham and Women’s Hospital.

The countries where the mortality rate in women with heart disease is the highest are: Russia, Bulgaria, Romania, Hungary, Columbia, China, Poland, the Czech Republic, Argentina, Scotland, Mexico, Ireland, the United States, Greece, England, Korea, Germany, Denmark, New Zealand, Portugal, Austria, Israel, Finland and Canada.

Yordan Dimitrov, Bulgaria (Photo by: Sister to Sister Foundation) Yordan Dimitrov, Bulgaria
Viktor Merenyi, Hungary (Photo by: Sister to Sister Foundation) Viktor Merenyi, Hungary

Lars Beese, Denmark (Photo by: Sister to Sister Foundation) Lars Beese, Denmark

 

  


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Fall social season warms up in Georgetown

August 30, 2011

Some major initiatives for the Boys and Girls Clubs of Greater Washington percolated to the top when the organization’s Women’s Leadership Group convened in Georgetown Tuesday night to indulge in Italian cuisine and discuss fundraising activities for the fall season.

A focus was on the annual ICON gala to be held at the Four Seasons in Georgetown on Wednesday, October 26, chaired by DC area interior designer Barbara Hawthorn.

“We will be the first Boys and Girls club nationally to have an art mobile,” said Hawthorn at the planning session at il Canale restaurant. “The van will be a complete art studio, and it will be taken around to the region’s clubs to develop the artistic skills of students.”

The art mobile will be on display for the first time in front of the Four Seasons throughout the evening of the gala, Hawthorn said.  An anonymous donor paid for the van. Superior Home Services Inc., headed by Daniel Steinkoler, outfitted the inside of the van. ACG Architects did the overall plan for the van.

The event planners also spoke about an event, akin to Fox’s popular “American Idol” TV show, where 10 of the best young performers from competition at the region’s Boys and Girls Clubs will perform on the Kennedy Center’s Millennium Stage on October 11.  Twelve students who were judged best in art will show their works there, too.

Vittorio Rosso, il Canale's GM, pours wine for the reception (Photo by: Natalia Janetti) Vittorio Rosso, il Canale's GM, pours wine for the reception
Among those participating in the discussion at il Canale were Patty Andringa, founder and president of the Women’s Leadership Group; Kathryn Jones Hanley of The Hanley Foundation; philanthropist Susan McCallister; Kim Watson, Pepco’s vice president of corporate philanthropy; and Charlotte Marshall, a donor to major art projects. 


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