Serial entrepreneur Kait Husmann found that combining her talents and interests was the perfect recipe for a successful business venture. Here, Kait talks to us about her journey in setting up her app Cook + Cure.
Originally from Montana, Kait moved to Ireland in 2005 and now lives in West Cork. Described as a “multi-passionate” entrepreneur, Kait’s road to Cook + Cure arrived via running her own wine bar in Cork city, working as a freelance creative consultant, a photographer, videographer, and graphic designer. It was through combining all of these in one manner or other that led her to Cook + Cure Ltd.
Cook + Cure Ltd. is the first platform that provides tailored nutrition advice based on an individual’s different health problems, health goals, and diet preferences. It is similar to having a whole team of health experts in your pocket giving you the what, why, and how to improve your health.
Her first app, Cook + Cure, has been downloaded over 10,000 times since it launched in mid-January 2017 and she is already planning the launch of a second app, “Bump + Bean”, the first nutrition app that guides women through the first three years of baby’s life from pregnancy, breastfeeding, onto solid foods.
Speaking about the idea for setting up the business, Kait recounts how after she was bitten by a tick she worried that she may have contracted Lyme disease which her husband was on a strong course of antibiotics for. Worried that she too may have contracted the disease which cannot be easily detected in its early stages, she embarked on research to find ways of strengthening her immune system against Lyme disease naturally. However, as Lyme disease wasn’t her only health concern she looked for an app or a website that would tell her what foods she should eat and herbs she should be taking for her unique combination of health concerns, but none could be found as every website, app, and book gave recommendations for one health problem at a time.
It was at this point that Kait decided on the idea to devise an app with a searchable database of medical problems, minor ailments, and health goals, with the ability to filter by personal dietary preferences.
As a professional food photographer and passionate foodie, the idea soon came to integrate recipes into the app, based on the app’s personalised food recommendations. When she proposed the business idea to her brother Ben who was diagnosed at 19 with MS, he flew to Ireland to develop Cook + Cure. Together they developed the concept of integrating herbs, supplements, and remedies into the app.
Kait says, “The truth is that a number of our friends and family have serious medical conditions. Ben was diagnosed with MS ten years ago and continues to manage his MS symptoms through nutrition, meditation, and exercise. Not to mention a good few of our friends are pregnant and having their first child this year, and are finding it a challenge to know exactly what they should eat and what they should avoid. The realisation of how many people our app could potentially help, including our family and friends, is the motivating force behind Cook + Cure. We believe that a healthy world starts with healthy people, and we want to do our part to help people achieve higher levels of health and wellbeing.”
Cook + Cure is the only app that makes smart, tailored nutrition and natural health suggestions based on overlapping medical conditions, ailments, and health goals. It is also the only app that provided advice from a variety of health care practitioners from a spectrum of healing modalities and suggests recipes specific to multiple medical conditions.
Speaking of the New Frontiers Programme, Kait says, “Being part of the programme has been an invaluable experience. We were given the support needed to validate our idea and bring it to market. Beyond the programme itself, the community of entrepreneurs has been just amazing and I can’t recommend the programme highly enough.”
Best advice you have ever received?
Everything is figureoutable. I would add to that, that things don’t always work out on the timescale you imagine. It really does take persistence and positive outlook to succeed.
Your advice to young entrepreneurs?
Start now. Don’t be hard on yourself if it takes longer than you imagine – it always does.
What advice you would give yourself if starting all over again?
Besides applying for New Frontiers earlier? Not much, the whole process has been invaluable, even the more difficult learning moments. You just have to trust the journey.
For more information on how the app works visit; https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3aHkzztLcRA