• Tel: (212) 799-3894
  • Email: info@cfyl.org

Our Story

The American Institute of Cancer Research estimates that more than 1/3 of the most common cancers could be prevented through healthier eating and lifestyles.

Since 2007, Cook for your LIFE has provided in-person and online healthy cooking classes in English and in Spanish free of charge. Our mission is to teach the wider cancer community of patients, caregivers and survivors how to live better, healthier lives through providing 101education about healthy food, and by teaching the basic cooking skills needed to succeed in improving diet for better overall health outcomes.

Our story began when founder Ann Ogden Gaffney took a break from a successful fashion career to focus on the treatment of her second cancer. As she became immersed in the world of hospitals and cancer, she became aware of the disconnect between getting information on healthy eating and nutritional meals during cancer treatment, and the practical skills needed to get them on the table. Ann is a skilled cook, and was easily able to adapt recipes to help her cope with the treatment side effects and eat well even on her worst days. However, for many of her fellow cancer patients in the chemo suite, lack of expertise in the kitchen made it overwhelmingly difficult for them to cope. To help, Ann started sharing her own cooking tips and advice, which eventually led to her first free hands-on cooking class organized with the hospital. In 2007 she founded Cook for Your LIFE.

Ann and Cook for Your LIFE have come a long way. As of writing our subscription free website has served some 5 million visitors and we have taught hands-on classes to over 12000 in the NYC area. Cook For Your LIFE has grown to become a trusted free resource to both cancer patients and nutritionists—teaching cancer patients how to cook their way to healthy survivorship, and enabling nutritionists to offer their cancer patients much more than a just a draconian list of foods to eat. We recently made the Feedspot Top 100Health Blog list. Cook For Your LIFE has also been an integral part of 2 successful peer reviewed National Institutes of Health funded studies in the Latina breast cancer community, both in collaboration with researchers at Columbia University’s Mailman School of Public Health.

We really do teach healthy cooking to people touched by cancer.
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Click to try our recipe search engine

Read the Story

About Ann

I'm a two-time cancer survivor. I come from a family of chefs and bakers and grew up surrounded by food and cooking. Long story short, I love to cook and eat! As I became more immersed in the world of hospitals after my 2nd cancer diagnosis, I began to see how much the cooking skills I had learned at home were helping me cope with my treatment side effects. I could adjust to taste changes and adapt my food to how I was feeling at any given moment. Then my 'aha' moment. One day, as I listened to a friend at my cancer support group describe her problems with how her food tasted, I realized that too many of my fellow cancer patients couldn't do what I was doing. The hospital nutrition staff could tell patients what to do to alleviate their symptoms but they couldn’t tell them how to do it. That’s where I knew I could help. Cook for Your LIFE was born.

More About Ann

Our Programs


Cook For Your LIFE Website - www.cookforyourlfie.org

Our subscription-free website, filled with cooking videos and over 1,000 recipes, teach cancer patients how to create healthy and delicious meals at home. Everything is easily searchable and organized by topic specific to the stage of treatment, dietary needs, or simply how patients feel.

Slideshows & Cooking Demos

Our slideshow presentations and cooking demonstrations at larger venues and conferences teach patients, caregivers and survivors how to prepare healthy, nutritional meals in a way that is both simple and enjoyable, to stay healthy in treatment and in survivorship. We also present to medical professionals, to give them extra tools to help their patients deal with side effects and eat better no matter what the stage of their treatment.
Photo: Ann getting ready to present at the YSC National Conference in Atlanta.

Cook For Your Life / Cocinar Para Su Salud

Taught in English and Spanish, this culturally-tailored program helps hundreds of underserved cancer survivors become more knowledgeable about sustainable healthy food options. It is part of our ongoing collaboration with Columbia University’s Mailman School of Public Health to research the dietary behaviors of cancer survivors.

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Our Wonderful Staff

Nathalie Beremejo

Office Administrator

Nathalie Beremejo

Office Administrator

Contact: nathalie@cfyl.org

Ann Ogden Gaffney

Founder & President

Ann Ogden Gaffney

Founder & President

Click here to read more about Ann and why she started Cook For Your LIFE

Chelsea Fisher

Recipe and Blog Editor

Chelsea Fisher

Recipe and Blog Editor

Chelsea joined Cook For Your Life in 2011 as the Director of Marketing and Website. Although she is now studying to be a nurse practitioner at CUNY, Chelsea is still involved with the organization as the Recipe and Food Editor, and oversees all recipe content for our website blog and online videos. Originally from Boulder, CO, Chelsea earned a bachelor’s degree in journalism from The New School, specializing in non-fiction writing and food studies. She was also the co-founder and CEO of Iko Ino, a NYC-based brand development and marketing firm.
Contact: chelsea@cfyl.org

Annette Mia Flores

Social Media Director

Annette Mia Flores

Social Media Director

Annette Mia is the point of contact for all things Instagram and Pinterest related at Cook For Your Life and Cook For Your Life Español. Coming to NYC after graduating from Texas State University with a bachelor of fine arts degree, she founded a non-profit production company that produces viral videos, short films, and TV pilots. She has overseen the social media content for NYC restaurants and food-based companies and was the project manager for the app LiveDish. She is very involved in the local food scene, incorporating her filmmaking and marketing skills to create a community of food lovers.
Contact: annette@cfyl.org

Linda Orlick

Director of Marketing & Communications

Linda Orlick

Director of Marketing & Communications

Linda brings over 35 years of experience in planning and executing innovative marketing, public relations, social media and branding campaigns and special events. Prior to joining Cook for Your LIFE, she was an independent brand strategist and consultant, serving a diverse range of businesses and non-profit organizations. She was the founder and president of a public relations and event management agency specializing in jewelry and luxury brands, and the co-founder of the Women’s Jewelry Association, which now has over 1,500 members worldwide. Compassionate and caring to those in need, she is a long-time volunteer with God’s Love We Deliver and was on the founding board of Gilda’s Club Worldwide.
Contact: linda@cfyl.org.

Victoria Silverio

Videographer

Victoria Silverio

Videographer

Victoria was born in the Dominican Republic and moved to the United States when she was 11 years old. It was during college at Rutgers University, where she earned a bachelor’s degree in journalism and Spanish, that she discovered her passion for visual storytelling and started creating her own videos. She is responsible for the videography, directing, editing, transcribing, and voice-over dubbing for Cook For Your Life’s cooking videos, special events, and cooking demonstrations. She has produced visual content for companies including Emporia Entertainment, Turitmo.com, Kesta Happening DC, and the Brick City Bhangra dance team of Newark, NJ.
Contact: victoria@cfyl.org

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