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Families First: Nutrition Education and Wellness System
Food stamp recipients typically purchase food items based on family preferences,
cultural food practices and other socioeconomic factors despite public health recommendations or
USDA Dietary Guidelines. Consequently, obesity, diabetes, hypertension, cardiovascular and cerebral
vascular disease and specific forms of cancer (breast and colon), ranks high among leading causes
of death for all racial groups in the United States.
However, statistics indicate that rates are two to four times higher
in ethnic minority groups (African-American, Native-American, and Latino/Hispanic) than in other
population groups. There also exist high mortality rates not only for these chronic diseases, but
high incidences of children and elderly malnutrition within limited-resource families. Limited-
resource pregnant women and infants also have higher incidences of lower weight gain during
pregnancy and higher percentages of low-birth weight.
A comprehensive culturally sensitive nutrition education program, entitled
FF-NEWS, was developed by the 1890 Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCU) in the
Southwest Region, South Carolina University (Southeast Region), and Lincoln University (Mountain-
Plain Region), to help ensure preventative nutrition can be given to help lower health disparities
through nutrition education. FF-NEWS enables food stamp recipients to make food selection and
preparation choices that are consistent with their lifestyle/cultural practices, thus enhancing the
health status of family members by effectively using all food resources for the purpose of holistic
health for the family .
Nutrition Nibbles Newsletters
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