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Op-ed: The Arts and Wellness

Marianne Garrah | Special to the Fitzhugh

We all know that immersing ourselves in something creative is just good medicine.

Whether it’s dancing or painting, it’s all related to the “feel good” transmission of dopamine that keeps away negativity.

Everyday stresses can find some release when we immerse ourselves in music or biking.

One has to wonder then why so many creative individuals suffer from mental illness, from Van Gogh to Hemingway, from Judy Garland to Anthony Bourdain.

June 25, Bourdain’s birthday, has been chosen by the culinary arts industry as a day to think about mental wellness.

This day of tributes is not meant for Bourdain.

“It’s for us, the survivors who have to carry on,” said Tim Carman, a food reporter at The Washington Post.

“I want to help de-stigmatize a condition that’s literally killing off people who make our world a better place.”

On June 25 in Jasper, you can sample two of Bourdain’s favourite foods.

Strawberries and mint will be available at noon at the Habitat for the Arts.

For dinner, Syrahs will be reproducing Bourdain’s signature dish, Boeuf Bourguignon, with all proceeds being donated to the Canadian Mental Health Association.

For mental health resources, call the Seton-Jasper Healthcare Centre at 780-852-6640.

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