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Mario Bautista, has been with the entertainment industry for more than 4 decades. He writes regular columns for People's Journal and Malaya.

Jan 7, 2021



IYA VILLANIA and Chef Jose Sarasola are paired together to host the new GMA-7 cooking show done in cooperation with Ajinomoto Philippines Corporation’s (APC), ‘Eat Well, Live Well. Stay Well.’ beginning Friday (January 8) where they will show you how to start the year right and improve one’s overall well-being with nutritious and mouthwatering dishes.

Every week, join ‘Mamazing’ Iya as she discovers and learns how to prepare delicious and healthy recipes with the help of ‘Chef Cuz’.

‘Eat Well, Live Well. Stay Well.’ is a 10-minute cooking show which aims to inspire the audience to cook through their stories and discover themselves through food.  Follow Mamazing’s character, a bubbly and modern mom, who strives to improve her cooking skills and adapt to the new normal while still putting her family as her top priority.

As a hands-on mommy and fitness enthusiast herself, Iya wishes to encourage her fellow parents to cook up nutritious and delightful meals for their families.

“We all know how a good meal can bring the whole family together. A good meal always makes everyone happy! So, for the mamas and papas who are all at home juggling work and preparing meals for their families, here’s a show that can give them great tasting meal ideas that will make them feel great and confident in putting simple, yummy, and quick dishes using the versatility of AJI-NO-MOTO® Umami Seasoning and AJI-GINISA® Flavor Seasoning Mix.”

Are her sons picky eaters? "Yes, so I have to serve food that are seasoned well by Ajinomoto."

So she really uses Ajinomoto even at home? "Oh yes, because it really brings out the best in the dishes that I cook."

Chef Jose, in turn, is beyond grateful to be the resident chef of the show and hopes to inspire the viewers to live a healthier lifestyle. 

“I’m super excited with this project! And I want to thank GMA for giving it to me, also my regular stint in 'Unang Hirit'. It’s my first time doing this kind of cooking show and being picked by a well-known food company like Ajinomoto Philippines Corp. to be the show’s resident chef was really something. Since we are in a time when health must be our top priority, the recipes we have prepared for our viewers are perfect for those who wish to be fit and to start eating healthier this year.”

How is it working with Iya? "I first met her when we did a cooking show on ABS-CBN ten years ago. I'm glad to work with her again as she is super mabait, super kwela. Our work environment now is more free, more relaxed."

Chef Jose reveals that his girlfriend, Japanese actress Maria Ozawa, went back to Japan last April. "She has bars here but they had to close down due to the pandemic, but she has a bar in Shinjuky, Tokyo, that is still operating so she has to attend to that. Mahirap kasi it's a long distance relationship, but we communicate everyday. Thanks to modern technology it's so much easier now."

Does he really use Ajinomoto when he cooks? "Yes as it brings out the best flavor from the dishes that I cook. It takes the dish to the next level to make it taste really good."

The pilot episode of ‘Eat Well, Live Well. Stay Well.’ features Mamazing Iya trying out the cooking skills that she learned from Chef Cuz by preparing a quick and low salt recipe, Shrimps in Roasted Vegetables. A proud achievement that she wanted to share with friends and family.

Don't miss ‘Eat Well, Live Well. Stay Well.’ beginning January 8, Fridays, 11:20am, on GMA-7.