Jennifer Vido, left, invited Seamus Mullen, a contestant on "The Next Iron Chef," to sign copies of his new cookbook at her 8th Annual Author Dinner for Arthritis. (March 4, 2013)

On Friday, Feb. 1, award-winning New York chef, restaurateur and cookbook author Seamus Mullen joined mystery writer, columnist and book reviewer Jennifer Vido, of Harford County, for her 8th Annual Author Dinner for Arthritis. Vido has been living with rheumatoid arthritis since she was a child and advocates for the 1.1 million Marylanders living with arthritis. The event was sponsored by Andrew McMeel Publishing.

Diagnosed with rheumatoid arthritis (RA) in 2007, Mullen was determined to change the way he ate to help his body fight the RA. His cookbook, Hero Food, was released last year and focuses on foods that reduce inflammation in the body. During the event, Mullen regaled more than 100 women with his cooking stories and love of oil. Afterward, Mullen spent time signing cookbooks and answering requests for cooking advice.

The proceeds from this event helped to fund programs such as Kids Rheum, valuable research and advocacy initiatives for arthritis, the nation's number one cause of disability. Attendees of this special event were able to engage in a very intimate meet and greet with the bestselling authors, interact for question and answer, all while raising funds for a great cause.

Arthritis can be a crippling and life changing disease that can strike at any age. The prevalence of arthritis or chronic joint symptoms is surging and affecting approximately 50 million Americans. In the mid-Atlantic region, 5.7 million people are affected by doctor diagnosed arthritis and nearly 1.1 million are Maryland residents; 5,600 are children. The Arthritis Foundation raises awareness and funds to help, prevent, control and cure arthritis and related diseases.


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The Arthritis Foundation is the leading health organization addressing the needs of some 50 million Americans living with arthritis, the nation's most common cause of disability. Founded in 1948, with headquarters in Atlanta, the Arthritis Foundation has many service points, including those in the mid-Atlantic region: Delaware, Maryland, District of Columbia, Virginia, North Carolina and South Carolina.

The Arthritis Foundation is the largest private, not-for-profit contributor to arthritis research in the world, funding more than $400 million in research grants since 1948. The foundation helps individuals take control of arthritis by providing public health education; pursuing public policy and legislation; and conducting evidence-based programs to improve the quality of life for those living with arthritis.