Behavior Change

Older adult increases vegetable intake

A client who attends the Happy Hearts Senior Center shared he didn’t eat many vegetables in the winter, due to the increased cost of fresh versions and his need to avoid canned versions due to the salt content. SNAP-Ed staff encouraged him to try frozen vegetables, as they are lower in salt. In the next session, he shared he had tried frozen vegetables and they have made a difference in his diet. “I am eating vegetables all through the winter months now, what a difference!” he stated. 

Healthy snacking

A woman attended an activity station at a local food pantry and shared struggles with healthy snacks. SNAP-Ed staff discussed potential solutions with her, and she agreed to start making her own healthier snack mix at home. Later that same month, SNAP-Ed staff saw the same woman at the Family Community Resource Center. She stated she made the snack mix each week and prepared pre-cut vegetables and homemade dip. She now eats very few snack cakes and candy and enjoys the newer, healthier snack options. Additionally, she is saving money by purchasing fewer highly processed snacks!

Mother encourages kids to snack healthy

A mother who has previously attended Eating Smart, Being Active nutrition classes spoke with SNAP-Ed staff recently. She has been implementing strategies learned from SNAP-Ed to improve her family’s health. Recently, she started cutting up fresh fruits and vegetables ahead of time so they are ready to eat when her children are hungry. She has noticed her children reach for these options before looking for more highly processed choices in the pantry. As a result, their fruit and vegetable intake has increased!

Making healthier snack choices

During an adult class, SNAP-Ed discussed choices when shopping for foods, and how to change an unhealthier food ‘want’ into a healthier food ‘need.’ A female participant shared, “I could buy whole-grain crackers instead of chips. I learned that from one of your lessons before!” Later, the same woman shared “this class has made me think more about what I eat and buy.”

Eat. Move. Save. booths

Eat. Move. Save. booths are more than just your typical information table; they are engaging and fun! Topics range from healthy snacks ideas to how to prepare some of the food that might be buried deep in the pantry or taking up space in the fridge. Handouts, recipes, and taste tests may also be available! Booth information can also be provided virtually via a prerecorded video during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Adult programs

For adults, two curricula options are available for engaging lessons on healthy lifestyle choices: Healthy Cents and MyPlate for My Family.

Other programming geared towards adults include Eat. Move. Save. booths and online resources.

Agencies that serve adults and their families can also work with INEP on strategies to promote healthier choices through messaging, signage, and policy changes.