Biotech executives visiting New Orleans will now have closer access to the research taking place in the laboratories in the Tulane University School of Medicine.

The school launched a new In-Residence Immersion Program that offers venture capitalists, scientists, entrepreneurs and executives in the biotech industry a functional workspace in its downtown campus that gives them "an opportunity to become immersed in the community. They are not just visiting," said James Zanewicz, the chief business officer for the School of Medicine.

He explained that visitors would not be renting the space but selected based on the possibility to create business collaborations with the school. They had a soft launch of the program over the summer and had a representative from J&J Pharmaceuticals use the space. Both the visitor and the school are required to sign confidentiality agreements so there can be open access to the research taking place in labs, clinics and classrooms at Tulane's health sciences campus.

I sat down with Susan Warner, founder of Seasoned MD, to learn about this new field of culinary medicine and how we can apply it to our lives.

“Culinary medicine is the merger of medical knowledge, nutrition, and culinary skill. Basically, it’s about food. Food is medicine. Food has the power to destroy health or bring wellness. It’s taking what we know as doctors about medical science and nutrition and converting it into a way to talk to patients about real food.”

Through her business Seasoned MD, Susan trains other physicians and medical residents. But she has some tips we can all use.

“First, follow a Mediterranean-style diet, this is what I was taught at the Goldring Center for Culinary Medicine at Tulane University. Secondly, have more whole foods and less processed foods. Thirdly, eat mostly plants, less meat, good fats, and good carbs. And finally, number four, portion control. That sounds so simple yet it can be so difficult. We as a community really need to be taught and that’s why I started Seasoned MD.”

“Food is health, medicine, and life. Share it with the ones you love.”

This is Jennifer Chandler with The Weekly Dish. Eat Well!

"This creates faster collaboration and they can come survey what we are working on," said Zanewicz. "It makes us much more accessible."

He added that it could also be attractive to startups and entrepreneurs exploring lower-cost markets for starting clinical trials or relocation.

The School of Medicine is currently overseeing research in the areas of infectious disease, cardiovascular and related diseases, cancer, neuroscience, regenerative medicine, and peptide chemistry.

If you are wondering what exactly is a Mediterranean Diet, here is Susan’s explanation.

“The Mediterranean Diet is based on nine principles. Consuming more fruits and vegetables, more whole grains, more fish, and more good unsaturated fats. It also includes limiting dairy, meat, and alcohol consumption.”

It sounds like we need to look at food in a different light and how it effects are health and well-being.