Obesity, poor nutrition, and limited physical activity are significant health concerns for Americans. In fact, poor health disproportionately affects low-income and minority populations with limited resources. Recent research documented that people who are most food insecure are at a greater risk for poor health and obesity than those who are food secure. Food insecurity has also been inversely associated with diet quality.
In response to these issues, the Expanded Food and Nutrition Education Program (EFNEP) of Texas assists limited resource families and youth in acquiring the knowledge, skills, attitudes, and changed behaviors necessary for nutritionally sound diets and contributes to their personal development and the improvement of total family diet and nutritional welfare.
Texas EFNEP targets families and youth at most risk with key nutrition education messages delivered via ethnically diverse paraprofessional educators who speak languages other than English. EFNEP educators work in urban areas where eligible families and youth live, go to school, and work. Using a series of at least six hands-on educational sessions, educators teach participants basic nutrition, methods to prepare nutritious meals on a limited budget, steps to keep foods safe, and tips to increase physical activity. The goal for each EFNEP educational session is to maximize learning outcomes and promote positive behavior change.
Through these community based programs, EFNEP improves the health and well-being of limited resource families and youth in Texas.