Open Arms of Minnesota

Making life easier and healthier

From the 2016 Annual Report

Client Lori and her sister and caregiver Diane
Client Lori and her sister and caregiver Diane

When Lori was diagnosed with brain cancer, she and her sister Diane did their best to face the challenges that came with her diagnosis. As medical bills mounted and radiation took its toll on Lori, they struggled to find the energy to put good food on the table.

“It meant lots of planning,” explains Diane, who is Lori’s primary caregiver. “We’d read the paper to find the deals, and we always shopped the cheaper stores, so we’d be going all over the place getting ingredients. And then to have to come home and cook—neither one of us had the energy to do that.”“A lot of times we were just getting Chinese takeout or something else that was easy,” adds Lori.

“So we weren’t eating healthy because we just couldn’t face going shopping and cooking,” says Diane.
The sisters recall that wintertime was particularly problematic. “During the summer, we’d at least go to the farmers markets and get fresh produce. But we both gained weight over the winter eating all those carbs,” says Lori.

But when spring came, a doctor mentioned that Open Arms could offer healthy food to ease some worries – and not just for Lori, but for Diane, too.

Now the sisters stop by Open Arms to pick up a week’s worth of made-from-scratch meals, and they marvel at the difference the food has made on their well-being. Lori can focus on healing, knowing that her meals are tailored by a dietitian to help her fight the cancer.

She and Diane report that their lives are much healthier now that nutritious food is accessible. “The meals are very well-rounded for nutrition and variety,” remarks Lori.

“And tasty! Every single thing we’ve eaten, whether it’s frozen or fresh, has been delicious.”

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