|Reviewers Comments: ||The ENAFS Healthy Living Program is a valuable tool for those working to improve the nutritional health of older adults. This review covers only the first module, “Unique Nutritional Needs of Older Adults”. Other modules in the series include lessons on diabetes and diabetic meal planning, hypertension, healthy eating for elders, and fall prevention. Lessons were developed in response to a needs assessment. Materials focus on behavior modification and conform to the Stages of Change model, with appropriate activities to address the needs of persons at each stage.
This module includes five specific lessons, all available on a CD-ROM. The first lesson provides a basic overview of healthy eating for older adults using "MyPyramid for Older Adults" as a guideline. Each of the subsequent lessons cover a different nutrient of importance to older adult nutrition, including fluids, fiber, calcium and vitamin D, folate, and vitamin B12. The lessons all start with a specific goal and both learning and behavioral objectives. To facilitate the delivery of the lessons, several unique features are provided for the educator, including a summary of lesson content, several pages of background information on the major topics, additional resources, scientific research references, and recommendations for further study. Careful review of the background information is recommended, especially for new educators and those without a strong background in nutrition.
Lessons begin with an icebreaker, which can be a handout, PowerPoint, or short discussion topic that introduces the lesson. Educators can then incorporate the provided interactive discussions, participatory activities, and supplemental materials designed to address the lesson objectives and facilitate behavior change. Lesson time can be tailored to fit into the amount of time allotted. Each of the lessons has a built in element of flexibility. An estimated time is provided, however actual time may vary depending on the activities selected, adaptations made and amount of discussion that occurs. Estimated time is broken down for the different segments of the lesson (icebreaker, discussion, activities, evaluation), allowing the educator to better predict the timing and flow of the lesson. The estimated time for the entire lesson is 35-45 minutes.
Each lesson ends with an evaluation. Evaluation materials address participants’ perceived knowledge and intent to change. Distribution instructions are provided in each lesson. Evaluation forms are straightforward, with a basic layout and 4 to 5 easy-to-understand questions. A reporting form is also included with each lesson for educators to complete once the lessons are complete. The reporting form may or may not be useful to educators, depending on the type of follow up data they are interested in.
Most of the materials needed to teach the lessons are included; however, some additional materials, such as food models, pictures of foods or empty food packages, and the MyPyramid BINGO game must be acquired separately. These items are optional and not essential for the lessons. Handouts(in English and Spanish), slides, lesson evaluations, and reporting forms are all provided on the CD-ROM. Some of the handouts are on additional topics and not gone over in the lesson, such as Food Stamps and physical activity. The educator may choose to set aside some time to go over these handouts separately. Handouts are generally one page, with a clear layout accented with clip art. Some review difficult topics and contain a large amount of information, so it is important to go over them carefully. Slides are available as Power point or PDF files and may be used as projected overheads, or if equipment is not available, as printed handouts.
An introduction to the lesson is available as a free online PDF (see link below). The introduction highlights specific features of the ENAFS Program, reviews the Stages of Change model, and provides an outline of each module and lesson. Lesson updates are available on line. See also . ENAFS Healthy Living Program Module 5: Healthy Eating for Elders.