|Reviewers Comments: ||Eat Smart, Live Strong (updated in November 2012) is based on the 2010 Dietary Guidelines for Americans and MyPlate, as well as a review of promising practices shown to have some promise in achieving behavior change among the target audience. The four fun, interactive sessions in the kit promote specific eating and physical activity behaviors to improve health and well-being.
Each session in Eat Smart, Live Strong encourages achievement by allowing participants to practice both nutrition and exercise activities. All of the sessions and handouts are designed to help older adults adopt two key behaviors:
These recommendation are based on the segment of the target audience with the lowest caloric need, sedentary women 60-74 years old (1,600 calories per day). If participants adopt and maintain these two simple behaviors, it will improve their health and their quality of life.
- Eat at least 3 Ĺ cups of fruits and vegetables every day (1 Ĺ cups of fruits and 2 cups of vegetables)
- Participate in at least 30 minutes of physical activity most days of the week
Developed and tested by professionals and experts in aging, nutrition education, and intervention development, Eat Smart, Live Strong contains activities and resources that can be tailored and adapted to help promote these key behaviors. The initiative addresses the unique leaning needs of older adults and provides games and activities, opportunities to socialize, and simple exercises to demonstrate physical activity. Participants are given the opportunity to share experiences, and each of the four sessions draws upon their personal and practical knowledge and understanding.
The Activity Kit provides much of what an educator or facilitator will need to prepare for and conduct each of the four sessions, including: session instructions, facilitation tips, space for notes and adaptations, reusable materials for games and activities, participant handouts, and feedback sheets for the participants. A sample flyer is also provided in the Leaderís Guide, and can be customized with local contact information and used to announce and promote upcoming sessions.
Session activities include assessing current participant behaviors; setting goals to help older adults achieve desired outcomes; identifying solutions to common eating and physical activity barriers among older adults; adding fruits and vegetables to classic foods to make change more familiar; and increasing awareness about low cost foods and nutrition assistance programs that will help older adults commit to the key behaviors. The sessions also encourage providers and participants to draw from resources in their communities to support participantsí goals.
Nutrition educators are encouraged to download the materials from the SNAP-Ed Connection web site. Please note that Eat Smart, Live Strong is no longer available in print. Questions about this resource can be directed to SNAP-Ed Connection.