Guest Writer: Erin Roberts
Two major contributions to excessive weight gain are consuming too many soft drinks and lack of physical activity. To focus on combating this problem, NC Cooperative Extension collaborated with Timothy Darling Presbyterian Church in Oxford to deliver an EFNEP/Faithful Families Eating Smart and Moving More series to parents and grandparents with young children. A married couple (JJ and TJ) both participated in the class and attended every session. With their busy, on-the-go lifestyles, they emphasized how little time they had to eat healthy and exercise on a regular basis. After completing the nine sessions in early 2011, the husband and wife pair began making changes for the benefit of their health.
As a first step, they decreased the amount of soft drinks they consumed. Eventually, the husband (JJ) totally cut out sugar-sweetened beverages from his diet. He walks two miles every day and utilizes the P90X Workout Program. Before starting his workout regimen 4 months ago, JJ weighed 200 pounds. Now his weight is 182 pounds—almost a difference of 20 pounds! His wife (TJ) drinks sodas and sweet tea only occasionally. She does ZUMBA three times per week for her physical activity. TJ gladly states, “This class made a world of a difference for me and my family. One step at a time, we are making strides for better health.” The helpful tips in the EFNEP program connected with the spiritual component of Faithful Families encourage participants to achieve what they once thought was impossible.
Erin Roberts works as a Program Associate for the Expanded Food and Nutrition Education Program (EFNEP) through NC Cooperative Extension in Durham County, NC.