Fit Men Cook: Kevin Curry fills void for young men cooking healthy recipes

 

Kevin Curry’s foray into cooking isn’t particularly remarkable.

He was a fresh graduate from the University of Texas, where he earned a degree in business and Hispanic studies, and he went through his first bout with “weight-cycling,” which is also known as yo-yo dieting. It’s the repeated loss and regaining of body weight.

He was tired of the way he felt about his body, and he wanted to learn how to cook at the same time. So he turned to the internet.

Even in 2012, Curry found there wasn’t much for a young man who was looking for quick and easy healthy recipes. This void led him to create his own space to experiment, seek advice and meet others on their own healthy-eating journey.

Curry, who lives and works in Dallas, launched @FitMenCook on Instagram in 2012. He has amassed 1.4 million followers since then.

“The blogging was a passion project of mine, and I felt like that part of blogging was to keep myself accountable and put myself on blast so I wouldn’t go back (to unhealthy eating habits),” Curry said in a phone interview. “It was not altruistic. It was like getting free advice. Let me blog out everything I’m eating and sharing my diet as thoroughly as possible and get some feedback.”

Now at 38 and seven years into his career as a food blogger, Curry had no idea the number of “people just like him who are disenchanted with cookie-cutter diets and really bland meals.”

Curry published his first cookbook “Fit Men Cook: 100-plus Meal Prep Recipes for Men and Women” in December. He touches on several diets: vegan, vegetarian, paleo, low-carb, high-carb, for bodybuilders, gluten-free, you name it.

His conversational, Instagram-honed language and non-traditional kitchen training is what makes this book different from other “easy recipes for non-chefs” type of cookbooks. In addition to releasing a cookbook, Curry makes videos for new recipes for his audience that is about 60 percent women and 40 percent men.

“When you look at cooking, it’s still a woman-dominated area, but I think it’s a pretty high percentage for men (who look at the blog),” he said. “We get stories all the time that (men) are cooking for their families, making meals and achieving their goals. That’s part of what keeps me going.”

It’s not just about the food. When Curry blogs, he is trying to connect with people in a real way and sometimes that means bringing up tough topics. In a recent recipe video, Curry talked about how to continue cooking and eating healthy when you’re depressed.

Growing up in the South and raised in a Christian community, Curry felt discouraged when he tried to talk about depression. He said he was told to “pray it away.” When that obviously didn’t work, he knew he needed to find something that would help him, and now he’s happy to share what he has learned with his followers.

“This came from my own personal experience with depression. Over the years, I’ve become increasingly more transparent with my followers, but it wasn’t something I did initially,” he said. “I’m one of the millions of people who suffer from seasonal affective disorder, and a lot of mine actually happens in the summer months.”

Another concept Curry promotes is mindful eating. He picked it up when he lived in Ecuador during college.

“Every single morning, we would have to get up together to have breakfast. It stressed me out, and I would panic because I thought I was going to be late (to work),” he said. “I was never late one time. It really taught me how in our American culture, we have gotten away from being mindful and attentive and respectful of our mealtime and the togetherness it brings. In the moments I can be mindful, I take the time to enjoy the food.”

“Fit Men Cook: 100-Plus Meal Prep Recipes for Men and Women” by Kevin Curry is available for purchase on Amazon.com, Barnes and Noble, Target, Books-A-Million and Indie Bound. You can also buy digital copies on Google Play and iBooks.

Try some of the recipes from ‘Fit Men Cook’ below

Recipe: Arugula Pesto Salad

Recipe: Low-Carb Roasted Cauliflower Hummus

Recipe: Easy Fruit Sorbet

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