Nutrition Education & Obesity Prevention Program

The Nutrition and Physical Fitness Program is a federally funded program that works to improve the health and lifestyle habits for people of all ages in Calaveras County.

The objectives of the program are:

  • Inform the community of the value of eating from all five food groups
  • Educate community members on how to grow and eat what is in season
  • Communicate the health risks of sugar sweetened beverages
  • Increase the amount of time every person is active each day
  • Teach community members how to live healthy on a budget

Test Your Nutrition & Fitness Knowledge

What mineral is found in all foods in the dairy group?

Calcium - All foods in the dairy group have calcium. It is a mineral that is key for strong bones and teeth. Calcium also helps with blood pressure and the nervous system. Read more about how dairy foods keep you healthy here.

True or False – Carbohydrates and sugar are the same thing?

True – Carbohydrates (“carbs”) is any nutrient that is sugar, starch, or cellulose. Eating too many carbs will cause the body to turn the carbs into fat. It is very important to learn about the carbs in the foods you eat if you have a chronic condition like diabetes. Read more about carbs and their effect on the body here. Read more about how carbs effect diabetes here.

How do I know if I am getting enough protein?

Most Americans get enough protein. However, eating leaner and more varied foods in the protein foods group is healthy. These choices include lean meats, seafood, dried peas and beans, and nuts. Read more about protein guidelines here.

True or False – Eating a healthy diet and being physically active may help prevent chronic disease like cancer or diabetes?

True. Eating a healthy diet rich in many different fruits, veggies, nuts, seeds, and lean protein helps keep you healthy.  It is also important to be  active to keep your heart healthy, protect against chronic disease, and improve mental health. You can read about how exercise lowers risk of chronic disease here and how diet effects chronic disease here

Does cooking veggies “cook away” the vitamins?

Cooking vegetables can lower the amount of certain vitamins in some foods, but cooking can also make other vitamins and minerals more available for your body to absorb. For this reason, prepare your vegetables in whatever way is most enjoyable for you, since this will make you more likely to make veggies a regular part of your diet. Remember sauces or seasonings can add calories, saturated fat, and/or sodium to veggies. You can read more about how cooking vegetables changes the nutritional value here and here.

What color veggies should you eat the most?

Eat as many colored veggies as possible to get many different vitamins and minerals. You can read more about why to eat many different colored veggies here

How much physical activity do I need?

  

Physical activity is important for everyone. How much physical activity you need depends on your age. Read more about physical activity guidelines here.

  • Adults (18 – 65 years)
    • Workout (walking, jogging, cycling, or swimming) at a medium pace 5 days a week for 30 minutes  or at a fast past pace for 3 days a week for 20 minutes.
    • Strength training 2 or more days a week to work all major muscle groups.

 

  • Children and adolescents (6 – 17 years)
    • Exercise for at least 60 minutes each day at a medium to fast pace. Engage in enjoyable physical activities that increase your heart rate and strengthen your muscles.

 

  • Young children (3 – 5 years)
    • Be physically active several times a day, adult caregivers should encourage the play to be as active as possible.

Is physical activity mostly safe for everyone?

Yes, physical activity offers many health benefits. Here are some things you can do to stay safe while you are active:

  • If you haven't been active in a while, start slowly and build up.
  • Learn about the types and amounts of activity that are right for you.
  • Choose activities that are right for you.
  • Build up the time you spend on an activity before switching to activities that take more effort.
  • Use the right safety gear and sports equipment.
  • Choose a safe place to do your activity.
  • See a health care provider if you have a health problem.
  • Read more about how to be safe while exercising here.

Why is physical activity important?

Regular physical activity is good for people of all ages, shapes, sizes, and abilities.

  • Being physically active can help you:
    • Increase your chances of living longer.
    • Feel better about yourself.
    • Decrease your chances of becoming depressed.
    • Sleep well at night.
    • Move around more easily.
    • Have stronger muscles and bones.
    • Stay at or get to a healthy weight.
    • Be with friends or meet new people.
    • Enjoy yourself and have fun.
    • Read more about the importance of physical activity here.

 

Why should I drink water?

Water is needed for our bodies because it is in every single cell, tissue, and organ. Sometimes we feel hungry when we are actually thirsty. Try drinking water before reaching for a snack. Choosing water can reduce calories and save money.  Many veggies and fruits have water in them and can help keep you hydrated. Drinks with added sugar will make you thirstier and add needless calories to your diet, these drinks should be avoided. Read more about why you should drink water here

 

Nutrition Documents, Resources & Links

 

USDA Choosemyplate.org icon and link. Link opens in new window.