According to the National Council on Aging, nearly 10 million seniors are “food insecure,” a term used by the U.S. Department of Agriculture to describe the lack of reliable access to a sufficient supply of affordable, nutritious food.
Whether due to illness, lack of transportation, disability or low income, too many seniors are going without the nutrition they need to stay healthy and live active lives.
Hilda Louise Jones is a local senior who was thrilled to learn about nutrition classes offered by the Sharp Senior Health Centers, in partnership with the Jacobs & Cushman San Diego Food Bank. The classes help seniors see that eating right doesn’t have to be hard. From food preparation to dining out, attendees are given tools to make educated choices that ensure good nutrition.
“The classes taught me how to read labels on food packaging, and understand what my daily requirements are and how the foods I eat fit within those requirements,” she says. “The classes were very interesting and informative. I discovered I was eating too much salt and sugar, and learned how to make healthy changes.”
The classes also inform seniors about additional local programs to help meet their needs, including nutrition services provided by the Food Bank, such as the Senior Food Program and CalFresh. In addition, the Food Bank provides attendees with free, fresh produce.
“I live on a fixed income and was new to San Diego, so I was able to learn about several places to get assistance when needed,” Jones says. “I really think others would benefit from the classes and programs, too.”
She credits the classes with helping her to eat better and feel better. “Plus, you get to meet new people,” Jones says with a smile. “The classes really helped me in so many ways.”
For the news media: To talk with a Sharp Senior Health Centers expert about their relationship with the Food Bank for an upcoming story, contact Erica Carlson, senior public relations specialist, at firstname.lastname@example.org.