December 12, 2008

Chef John Folse Brings Healthy Cajun Cooking to the Louisiana 2 Step Website


Chef John Folse, acclaimed Louisiana chef and restaurateur, is stirring up something new with the Louisiana 2 Step.

Folse has joined with Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Louisiana to promote wellness and healthy eating by creating his own Chef's Corner at the 2 Step website, Folse fans can check out a calendar of his upcoming appearances and even choose the popular chef as their personal virtual coach - hearing motivational messages recorded in his own voice.

Folse's key contributions to his Chef's Corner will be his weekly blogs and tips to help website visitors learn that healthier cooking can be delicious. By using recipes from his heart-healthy cookbook, Something Old, Something New: Louisiana Cooking with a Change of Heart, Folse and the 2 Step give the free wellness program's members more Louisiana-focused methods to eat right.

"With the right ingredients and knowledge, any Cajun or Creole favorite can be transformed into a healthy dish," says Folse. "The Louisiana 2 Step is a wonderful way for me to teach healthy methods to even more people."

More than 11,500 users have registered with the Louisiana 2 Step website at, which was developed by Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Louisiana and the Pennington Biomedical Research Center to help educate and inspire Louisianians to improve their health by making two small changes in their daily routines: eating right and moving more. All website visitors can find resources for getting healthy and staying healthy, and registered members have access to more free interactive tools and motivational support.

"The most widely visited area of the 2 Step website is the recipes section," says John Maginnis, vice president of Corporate Communications at Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Louisiana. "Adding Chef Folse's weekly recipes will bring even more Louisiana flair to the site and will be a great benefit to all of our members."

Folse's Chef's Corner neatly balances the activity-focused Mike's Turf section of the Louisiana 2 Step website, which features New Orleans starting fullback Mike Karney's blog and exercise tips. Karney also appears as a virtual coach on the site and has participated in events such as National Walk@Lunch Day in April 2008. Together, Folse and Karney embody the 2 Step concept of "Eat Right. Move More."

Other features of the Louisiana 2 Step website include:

  • Interactive trackers to help members record their weight, daily activity, calories consumed, key lab test results and more
  • Exercise tips and guides
  • Lists of healthy foods and snacks
  • Healthy recipes and a nutrition guide
  • A calendar of health- and wellness-related events statewide
  • Health news
  • A list of Louisiana 2 Step Participating Restaurants
  • Bonus programs, such as discounts on Jenny Craig membership and the Junior League of Baton Rouge's cookbook River Road Recipes III: A Healthy Collection

Any website visitor can sign up for the Louisiana 2 Step, which now features registered members in 36 states and every Louisiana parish. Organizations, families, companies and other groups can also sign up as teams and set team goals to help motivate one another.

About Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Louisiana
Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Louisiana is Louisiana-owned and -operated. Marking its 75th anniversary in 2009, the company is an independent licensee of the Blue Cross and Blue Shield Association. It is a tax-paying mutual company, owned by its policyholders. Headquartered in Baton Rouge, Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Louisiana also has district offices in Alexandria, Houma, Lafayette, Lake Charles, Monroe, New Orleans and Shreveport. The company's subsidiaries include HMO Louisiana, Inc. and Southern National Life Insurance Company, Inc. For more information, visit the company's website at

About John Folse
Chef John Folse is the owner and executive chef of several Louisiana-based corporations, including Bittersweet Plantation Dairy, White Oak Plantation, Bittersweet Plantation Bed & Breakfast, Exceptional Endings Pastry Division, Chef John Folse & Company Manufacturing and Chef John Folse & Company Publishing. He is the author of seven cookbooks and is featured in both radio and television programs worldwide. Chef Folse also does a live cooking demonstration twice a week during WAFB's television news broadcast in Baton Rouge, La. Additionally, the Chef John Folse Culinary Institute at Nicholls State University is named in his honor.