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Posts Tagged: nutrition

New booklet advises Santa Cruz County residents 'Fresh Starts Here'

Produce tasting, nutritional tips and raffles were part of a celebration around the release on Monday of a new guide to local fruit and vegetables in Santa Cruz County, reported Donna Jones in the Santa Cruz Sentinel.

The 40-page booklet - titled "Fresh*Starts*Here" - was developed by UC Cooperative Extension, the Palo Alto Medical Foundation and the Santa Cruz County Farm Bureau. It includes nutrition information, tips for choosing and storing produce, recipes, and profiles of local farmers and health care professionals.

"It's about healthy eating and a healthy community," said Laura Tourte, UCCE farm management advisor in Santa Cruz County.

Tourte said the guide promotes consumption of food grown by local farmers. The recipes were chosen with an eye toward simple preparation and appeal to families.

UCCE contributed $4,100 to support the printing of the booklet, and all development committee members and participants contributed their time and effort. Funds to produce additional copies and a Spanish-language version are being sought.

Additional events marking the release of the booklet take place at 3 p.m. Nov. 18, at the Palo Alto Medical Foundation main clinic, 2025 Soquel Ave., Santa Cruz; and at 3 p.m. Nov. 20 at the PAMF westside clinic, 1303 Mission St., Santa Cruz.

Berry grower Javier Zamora is one of the farmers featured in the new booklet, 'Fresh*Starts*Here'
Posted on Tuesday, November 18, 2014 at 9:24 AM

UCCE partners with UC Merced on critical issues

University of California Cooperative Extension has headquartered two new specialists on the UC Merced campus, reported Scott Hernandez-Jason of UC Merced University News. Karina Diaz-Rios, specialist for nutrition, family and consumer sciences, joined UCCE on Sept. 2. Tapan Pathak, specialist for climate adaptation in agriculture, will start Feb. 2, 2015.

"These positions come with a focus on interacting with the community, conducting applied research, and translating UC research to help the ag economy and local residents,” said Tom Peterson, UC Merced Provost and Executive Vice Chancellor. “We are pleased that UC Merced can partner with UC ANR (UC Division of Agriculture and Natural Resources) on these important issues.”

Karina Diaz-Rios
According to the news release, Diaz-Rios will be housed in UC Merced's Health Sciences Research Institute and focus on nutrition research and education and food security. She will connect with a larger team of nutrition researchers and educators throughout the UC system addressing issues related to healthy food and human health.

Tapan Pathak
Pathak, who will be housed in the Sierra Nevada Research Institute at UC Merced, will help farmers and ranchers adapt to new conditions created by variable and changing climate. He will collaborate with UC colleagues and state and federal agencies in statewide efforts to address climate variability and climate change adaptation and mitigation. He is currently an extension educator in climate variability at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln.

UC ANR continuously provides research-based solutions to the California agriculture industry, said Barbara Allen-Diaz, ANR vice president.

“California agriculture is a world-recognized marvel, and we'd like to think the university, through ANR's research and outreach, is a big reason why,” she said. “Adding UC Merced to our existing, thriving partnerships with UC Davis, UC Berkeley and UC Riverside will only strengthen UC efforts in helping California and the world to sustainably feed itself.”

Posted on Wednesday, October 15, 2014 at 10:03 AM

Food banks in Fresno and Tulare consider merger

UCCE nutrition educator Grilda Gomez provides nutrition education at FoodLink of Tulare County fresh produce giveaway in Farmersville.
UC Cooperative Extension in Tulare County has a long history of collaboration with FoodLink, the local food bank. For that reason, the nutrition, family and consumer sciences advisor and nutrition educators are closely monitoring recent negotiations about a proposed merger of FoodLink for Tulare County, Inc., with the Community Food Bank in Fresno County.

The Visalia Times-Delta reported that UC Cooperative Extension was one of the organizations represented at a meeting about the potential merger last Friday, which also included Kaweah Delta Healthcare District, Pixley-based Be Healthy Tulare and United Way of Tulare County.

“I guess one of my fears is there is an inherent distrust of Fresno,” the story quoted Cathi Lamp, nutrition, family and consumer sciences advisor for UCCE in Tulare County and a former FoodLink board member. Lamp said she is concerned the merged food bank would be based in Fresno County, and Tulare County's needs might be ignored.

Julie Cates, UCCE nutrition program coordinator, told me FoodLink of Tulare County has long focused on distributing quality, nutrient dense products and partnering with agencies, such as UCCE, to provide nutrition education. 

"We were able to have our teachers at the school receiving the 'farmers market' write testimonial emails and one teacher submitted letters from the fourth-grade students," Cates said. "I am very pleased with this outcome, as it illustrates how the food distributions are migrating from the inner to outer circles of the social ecological model in which we are striving to serve, reflecting universal behavior change."

View a one-minute video about one of the collaborative projects conducted by FoodLink of Tulare County and UCCE Tulare County:

Posted on Monday, March 10, 2014 at 10:02 AM

UCCE provides nutrition education called for after food stamp cuts

The UC CalFresno and Expanded Food and Nutrition Education programs teach SNAP recipients valuable lessons for making the best use of their benefits.
After the Fresno Bee ran a story about local families' struggle to cope with cuts to the federal Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP), commonly known as food stamps, Sanger resident Nina Balbach responded with a letter to the editor suggesting SNAP recipients could still buy enough food with the reduced benefits.

"I went to our local Winco grocery story (without coupons) on Saturday and priced a week's worth of groceries," Balbach wrote. "I was over budget by 6 cents."

She said the government "is not teaching our disadvantaged how to cook, shop or budget."

In today's letters to the Fresno Bee, Kristen Stenger, UC Cooperative Extension advisor in Fresno County, pointed out that UCCE nutrition educators teach low-income families how to eat, budget, shop and cook via the UC CalFresh Program and Expanded Food and Nutrition Education Program. The classes are supported by the USDA.

"The Plan, Shop, Save and Cook curriculum teaches budgeting, shopping, and cooking to help grow healthy families. Eating Smart, Being Active curriculum is also used. It pairs nutrition education, meal planning, and money management with physical activity. Over the last year these programs taught over 40,000 adults and youth about nutrition and healthy living in Fresno County," Stenger wrote.

Read more here:


Posted on Wednesday, November 13, 2013 at 8:43 AM

Teens drink too many sugary beverages

A 20 ounce soda contains 16 teaspoons of sugar.
A policy brief published by the California Center for Public Healthy Advocacy reveals "an alarming spike" in sugary beverage consumption among 12- to 17-year-olds, reported the Appeal Democrat, a newspaper that serves Sutter and Yuba counties.

"We are in the midst of a youth diabetes epidemic that is perpetuated by all of these sugary drinks," said Harold Goldstein, one of the report's authors and the executive director at the California Center for Public Health Advocacy.

Research cited in the policy brief found that the percent of children under the age of 12 who drink at least one sugar-sweetened beverage per day dropped between 2005 and 2012, however sugar beverage consumption increased among adolescents. Even in groups where sugar-sweetened beverage consumption declined between 2000 and 2010, the drinks continue to be a significant contributor to total caloric intake, especially for children and adolescents.

Appeal-Democrat reporter Andrew Creasey noted in the story that UC Cooperative Extension in Yuba and Sutter counties is helping teenagers understand the high level of sugar in their favorite beverages by displaying white sugar in the equivalent quantities.

"It's pretty shocking for them to see how much sugar is in these beverages," said UCCE nutrition educator Chelsey Slattery. "We talk about the health effects, the potential weight gain and how it can lead to diabetes and heart issues."

Slattery and her colleagues also teach students how to read a food label and how to be wary of advertisements.

"Sunny Delight has things like a sun and an orange on its label that make you think it's a healthy beverage, but it's only 5 percent juice," Slattery said.

Slattery encourages students to drink 100 percent juice, milk or water, the article said.

Posted on Tuesday, October 29, 2013 at 10:56 AM

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