Hey, San Antonio! Want Help to Eat Healthier?



You can get help eating healthier from the Green Wellness Program: Plants-2-Plate, a 6-month program led by Wellness 360 at UT Health San Antonio.   Plant-based food is the heart of the program.  “The mission of the UT Health San Antonio Green Wellness Program: Plants-2-Plate is to make lives better by promoting lifestyle change, including a plant-predominant eating pattern to achieve optimal health,” according to the program webpage.  Get information on how to join!  Can a Plant-Based Diet Work for You?   The future of humanity depends on building healthier, plant-based food systems.  A plant-based diet focuses on food that comes primarily from plants including fruits, vegetables, nuts, seeds, oils, whole grains, and legumes.  Some people experience different ...

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4 Incredible Ways SNAP Helps People


Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) food insecurity

The federal Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) program provides temporary support to help people and families afford food.   But SNAP benefits are often under fire.  After Trump-era efforts to curb SNAP benefits and the recent expiration of COVID-era SNAP increases, some lawmakers are pushing to add more work requirements to qualify for eligibility.  Under the House’s proposed expansion of work requirements to parents and caregivers, as many as four million children could go hungry.   “Millions of low-income households, people of color, and their families rely on basic supports to access health care, feed themselves, afford childcare, and survive financial and health insecurity,” according to a UnidosUs blog. “Cuts to these programs, or additional ...

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UPDATE: Health Equity Report Card Covers Child Opportunity, Location Affordability, Transit Access


UPDATE: Health Equity Report Card Covers Child Opportunity, Location Affordability, Transit Access

We have updated our Salud America! Health Equity Report Card to cover your county’s child opportunity score, environmental justice score, location affordability, and transit access. The Health Equity Report Card, first launched in 2017, auto-generates Latino-focused and local data with interactive maps and comparative gauges, which can help you visualize and explore local inequities in housing, transit, poverty, health care, food, education, and more. You will see how your county stacks up in these health equity issues — now including child opportunity, location affordability, and transit access — compared to your state and the nation. Then you can share the Report Card with your local leaders to shift from individualist thinking to advocating for systemic community change ...

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Feeding Fort Worth with the FunkyTown Fridge



Kendra Richardson worried if her neighbors in Fort Worth, Texas, would have enough food as the COVID-19 pandemic worsened nutrition security, healthcare, and housing.   Richardson saw an opportunity to help – with a community fridge.  Richardson launched FunkyTown Fridge in September of 2020 with the purpose of feeding the community and giving neighborhood families access to healthy food, making it the first and only community fridge in Fort Worth at the time.   “We place refrigerators and pantries in food apartheid neighborhoods around Fort Worth, and then allow them to be accessible and open 24/7,” Richardson said. “So, it's free food, community-based on a give what you can, take what you need basis.”  Let’s explore how has Richardson’s FunkyTown Fridge ...

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7 Actions You Can Take for Earth Day



On April 22, let’s celebrate Earth Day! Earth Day honors the achievements of the environmental movement and urges for protection of our planet’s natural resources for future generations. The observance began on April 22, 1970, thanks to Wisconsin Sen. Gaylord Nelson and Harvard University graduate student Denis Hayes. Since then, it has promoted advocacy, education, and conservation around environmental issues like climate change and pollution. As this year’s celebration approaches, Salud America! is sharing five ways you can get involved to preserve and improve the environment. 1. Reduce, Reuse, Recycle What is the most effective way to reduce waste? Don’t create it in the first place. “Making a new product emits greenhouse gases that contribute to climate change ...

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10,000 People Speak Up and USDA Expands Free School Meals for All Students!


Students eating lunch

The USDA has sought comments on a proposed rule to increase the number of high-poverty schools that can offer free school meals for all students. The proposal would expand the Community Eligibility Provision (CEP) by lowering the minimum identified student percentage participation threshold from 40% to 25%. That means more schools and districts can opt into the CEP, which can: Increase school meal participation. Reduce stigma. maximize federal reimbursements. eliminate unpaid meal charges. reduce paperwork for school staff and families. “Many schools and even some entire states have successfully provided free meals to all their students,” said Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack. “We applaud their leadership in nourishing children and hope this proposed ...

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How WIC Can Help Address the Maternal Mortality Crisis


WIC healthy food

Despite the heaviest spending on healthcare, the US has the highest maternal mortality rate among developed nations. Unfortunately, this historic trend has worsened over time. To help mitigate the maternal mortality crisis, leaders should strengthen the Special Supplemental Nutrition Program for Women, Infants and Children (WIC), according to Dr. Jamila Taylor, president and CEO of the National WIC Association (NWA). “WIC’s targeted support can and should be leveraged to reduce the prevalence of risk factors that contribute to adverse maternal health outcomes,” Dr. Taylor said in an NWA press release. Let’s explore the extent of pregnancy-related deaths in the US, the role of WIC in women’s health, and how you can support the WIC program and health equity in your ...

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#SaludTues Tweetchat 5/2/23: How to Create Food Equity


food equity nutrition tweetchat

Many Latino families struggle to get enough food to feed their families. They often face hunger. Even if they do get enough food, what they have is often nutritionally vacant. This contributes to a variety of disparities in diabetes, heart disease, and other health conditions. We need an environment of food equity. Let’s use #SaludTues on Tuesday, May 2, 2023, to discuss emerging strategies to change environments, systems, and policies to encourage equitable access to affordable, healthy food in our schools and communities across the nation for Latinos and all people! WHAT: #SaludTues Tweetchat: How to Create Food Equity TIME/DATE: 1-2 p.m. ET (Noon-1 p.m. CT), Tuesday, May 2, 2023 WHERE: On Twitter with hashtag #SaludTues HOST: @SaludAmerica CO-HOSTS: Healthy ...

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74,000 People Support More Nutritious School Meals for Students!


Girl receiving lunch at school.

The USDA is proposing stronger nutrition standards for school meals to give kids the right balance of nutrients for healthy and appealing meals. The new plan for stronger nutrition standards for school meals includes incrementally reducing sodium, a limit on added sugars (for the first time), and emphasizing whole grain products, while continuing to serve fruits, vegetables, and whole grains. USDA wants your feedback on its proposed changes. May 2023 Update: 438 Salud America! members submitted a model comment and were among over 74,000 people overall to comment on USDA’s proposed school meal nutrition changes. The model comment was created by Salud America! at UT Health San Antonio in partnership with UnidosUS! After a one-month time extension, the USDA closed the public ...

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