Flávia Fernandes: Connecting with Community Through Healthy Cookbooks

Flavia Fernandes

From a young age, Flávia Fernandes wanted to practice medicine. Thanks to years of resiliency and dedication, she is now working toward a medical degree as a medical humanities student at UT San Antonio. But she’s already working hard to improve the health of her community. Fernandes, who is originally from Brazil, is part of the El Bari UT Health Healthy Choices Team — a group of San Antonio doctors, students, and community members who are creating and sharing healthy recipes online along with health education resources. For Fernandes, this is a life-long goal realized. “The work I’m doing now is better than what I dreamed for,” she said. “I wanted to learn about the ways doctors engage with the community and promote positive changes in people’s lives. ...

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Report: Prioritize Hunger Assistance Amid COVID-19

PHA Report Graphic 1

Too many families have struggled with food insecurity for too many years. Getting access to enough healthy food is a task that has only been made harder by the COVID-19 pandemic, which is especially harming Latinos. Worse, food insecurity is overburdening social services and nonprofit organizations that provide much-needed food—especially nutritious, healthy meals—to families, according to a recent report from the UCONN Rudd Center and the Partnership for a Healthier America (PHA). “The COVID-19 pandemic placed extreme hardship on American families and the food banks that help them put dinner on the table,” the report’s authors write. “Unemployment soared and people seeking food assistance, who were also those most severely impacted by COVID-19, dramatically increased ...

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Eloísa Trinidad: Starting a Vegan Community Fridge in New York

eloisa trinidad hero story

When Eloísa Trinidad teamed up with New York activist Power Malu to help her community, she knew it needed to align with her values: ending the exploitation of animals. Trinidad is the executive director of Chilis on Wheels New York, a nonprofit with regional affiliates that focus on making veganism accessible to communities in need through sharing meals, providing food relief, and toiletries and clothing that don’t use animal products. She’s also the executive director of the Vegan Activist Alliance, a New York organization that fights to end animal exploitation. Together with Malu, Trinidad started Overthrow Community Fridge in New York City to provide nutritious, plant-based foods to people in need. By supporting her neighbors with healthy foods, Trinidad is also able to ...

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Philadelphia is Fighting Food Insecurity with Food Pharmacies

Food insecurity is impacting Latinos across the US, which includes the children of families who are struggling financially due to the spread of COVID-19. While civic leaders throughout the country need to provide greater support to these individuals, some organizations are stepping up. This includes the Children's Hospital of Philadelphia (CHOP) who recently announced a new location of its Healthy Weight Food Pharmacy — a neighborhood-focused resource that provides families healthy food. "Because food insecurity intersects with other social determinants of health, the Food Pharmacy team also screens patients for co-existing social needs and connects them to appropriate resources," said Alonzo South, Senior Director of Community Engagement at CHOP. "We know that many of our ...

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David Miskie: Founding a Bilingual, Nutritional Cereal Company to End Childhood Obesity

San Franola Cereals

When David Miskie graduated from UC Berkeley, he wasn’t planning on starting a cereal company. He actually worked for a few years in consulting, private equity, and investment banking. But after working on consumer products, Miskie, his dad, and his best friend Matt Teichman had an idea – What if we could create a product that everyone loves and make it healthier and better for you? That’s how San Franola Cereals & Snacks was born. Ten years later, San Franola is focused on distributing high quality, whole-food cereals to public schools. They’ve even expanded their labels to include Spanish, so that Spanish-speaking, Latino families can know what healthy ingredients are in their cereal. While keeping up with consumer demand and adjusting to the COVID-19 pandemic ...

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3/16 #SaludTues Tweetchat: Food Insecurity During a Pandemic

Food Insecurity Tweetchat

Lacking access to healthy, nutritious food is a huge problem for Latinos and other disadvantaged Americans across the country. This issue has only been exasperated over the past year as the coronavirus pandemic has rocked communities—especially those that face systemic inequities—to the core. Despite many businesses, civic leaders, advocates, and nonprofit organizations’ work to make a difference has helped many, immediate action is needed in order for children and adults to consume healthy foods. Most importantly, spreading the word about this significant problem is one way to make progress. Together we can help bring an end to food insecurity in America! WHAT: #SaludTues  Food Insecurity During a Pandemic DATE: Tuesday, March 16, 2021 TIME: 1:00-2:00 p.m. ...

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School Meals Play Big Role in Health of American Children, Especially Latinos

School meals are important contributors to the healthy diets of our nation’s children. This is especially true for children in food insecure homes, almost half of whom are Latino, according to 14 papers published in a special issue​ of the journal ​Nutrients. The papers make important links between school meals and food security, obesity, and racial/ethnic disparities. "These new papers go even deeper in exploring how national policies [including the Healthy, Hunger-Free Kids Act] have affected children and schools,” said Dr. Mary Story of Healthy Eating Research, which commissioned the new papers. “As Congressional leaders look to reauthorize the bill this year, it’s critical that these standards are kept in place.” Update 4/8/21: Jamie Bussel of the Robert Wood ...

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Two States Move Closer to Adopting Sugary Drink Taxes

Sugary drinks can have a detrimental impact on people of all ages, which is why civic and health leaders across the US are working to curb consumption. How are they doing this? One of the main ways is through increasing taxes on soda, fruit juice, and other sugary drinks. These measures boost the price of sugary drinks to reduce consumption and create revenue for community health programs. Two states—Washington and Rhode Island—have just proposed sugary drink taxes in hopes of improving public health, according to Dr. Amy Nunn, the executive director of the Rhode Island Public Health Institute (RIPHI). “This important legislation will help alleviate hunger and promote healthy eating across Rhode Island,” Nunn told Rhode Island FOX affiliate WPRI12. “We are committed ...

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Isabella Jiménez: Launching a Food App to Inspire Healthy Eating

isabella jimenez myfunfood app

Isabella Jiménez is only 16 years old, but she’s already an entrepreneur and app creator. In fact, she got started when she was 12. Jiménez began creating her app called MyFunFood in 2018. The app is meant to be a digital cookbook where young people can learn to cook easy, healthy recipes, while also playing trivia games and learning health tips. After years of planning and development, Jiménez launched MyFunFood in December 2020. It’s available to download for free in the Apple Store. “The goal now that it's out is just to try to get it to not only kids, but adults and families as well, and not just the San Antonio area, but hopefully even the across the country,” Jiménez said. UPDATE: Jiménez received the Silver Innovation Award from the Hispanic Heritage ...

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