Posts Tagged: nutrition
University of California Cooperative Extension has headquartered two new specialists on the UC Merced campus, reported Scott Hernandez-Jason of UC Merced University News. Karina Diaz-Rios, specialist for nutrition, family and consumer sciences, joined UCCE on Sept. 2. Tapan Pathak, specialist for climate adaptation in agriculture, will start Feb. 2, 2015.
"These positions come with a focus on interacting with the community, conducting applied research, and translating UC research to help the ag economy and local residents,” said Tom Peterson, UC Merced Provost and Executive Vice Chancellor. “We are pleased that UC Merced can partner with UC ANR (UC Division of Agriculture and Natural Resources) on these important issues.”
UC ANR continuously provides research-based solutions to the California agriculture industry, said Barbara Allen-Diaz, ANR vice president.
“California agriculture is a world-recognized marvel, and we'd like to think the university, through ANR's research and outreach, is a big reason why,” she said. “Adding UC Merced to our existing, thriving partnerships with UC Davis, UC Berkeley and UC Riverside will only strengthen UC efforts in helping California and the world to sustainably feed itself.”
The Visalia Times-Delta reported that UC Cooperative Extension was one of the organizations represented at a meeting about the potential merger last Friday, which also included Kaweah Delta Healthcare District, Pixley-based Be Healthy Tulare and United Way of Tulare County.
“I guess one of my fears is there is an inherent distrust of Fresno,” the story quoted Cathi Lamp, nutrition, family and consumer sciences advisor for UCCE in Tulare County and a former FoodLink board member. Lamp said she is concerned the merged food bank would be based in Fresno County, and Tulare County's needs might be ignored.
Julie Cates, UCCE nutrition program coordinator, told me FoodLink of Tulare County has long focused on distributing quality, nutrient dense products and partnering with agencies, such as UCCE, to provide nutrition education.
"We were able to have our teachers at the school receiving the 'farmers market' write testimonial emails and one teacher submitted letters from the fourth-grade students," Cates said. "I am very pleased with this outcome, as it illustrates how the food distributions are migrating from the inner to outer circles of the social ecological model in which we are striving to serve, reflecting universal behavior change."
View a one-minute video about one of the collaborative projects conducted by FoodLink of Tulare County and UCCE Tulare County:
Ritchie to lead Nutrition Policy Institute
I am pleased to announce that after a nationwide search we have selected Lorrene Ritchie to serve as the inaugural director of the Nutrition Policy Institute (NPI), effective Feb. 18. She will also be a UC Cooperative Extension specialist.
NPI is a new institute within UC ANR, with the mission of improving nutrition and reducing obesity, hunger and chronic disease risk in children and their families in diverse settings. The institute and its director will provide statewide nutrition policy leadership for ANR's research and education activities and will work in synergy with research and outreach efforts being conducted in Davis and Berkeley campus departments and colleges and throughout the UC system.
Ritchie brings to this new position her vast experience in applying research to policy and working with UC Cooperative Extension advisors and specialists, UC faculty and others involved in nutrition-related research and education. With her years of applied research being recognized for having a high evaluation standard and policy implications at state and national levels, she is highly respected in the nutrition field. She has testified before state and federal legislature with the ability to translate complex issues into realistic and necessary solutions for decision makers.
Ritchie has served since 2005 as associate researcher and director of research at the Dr. Robert C. and Veronica Atkins Center for Weight and Health at UC Berkeley. She provided leadership and coordinated research efforts at the center, collaborating with an extensive network of multidisciplinary researchers, program delivery experts and policy advocates to support evidence-based policy and practice initiatives in nutrition and obesity prevention. As a principal investigator, she directed research projects funded at approximately $4 million and supervised many concurrent research project teams.
From 2000 to 2005, Ritchie worked as assistant researcher and project director for the center preparing grant proposals and conducting research. She prepared over 50 grant proposals to federal and private funding sources at the center. She has held teaching positions including adjunct assistant professor for two years at Samuel Merritt College's Intercollegiate Nursing Program, and lecturer for five years at UC Berkeley in the Department of Nutritional Sciences and Toxicology.
Ritchie earned a B.S. in chemistry from San Jose State University and an M.S. and Ph.D. in nutritional sciences, both from UC Berkeley. She is also a registered dietitian.
We are so fortunate to have Dr. Ritchie to launch the NPI. She will be based in Oakland, but she will be traveling frequently to collaborate with colleagues throughout the state as well as with federal entities. I hope you will join me in welcoming her to ANR.
View or leave comments for ANR Leadership at http://ucanr.edu/sites/ANRUpdate/Comments.
This announcement is also posted and archived on the ANR Update pages.
"I went to our local Winco grocery story (without coupons) on Saturday and priced a week's worth of groceries," Balbach wrote. "I was over budget by 6 cents."
She said the government "is not teaching our disadvantaged how to cook, shop or budget."
In today's letters to the Fresno Bee, Kristen Stenger, UC Cooperative Extension advisor in Fresno County, pointed out that UCCE nutrition educators teach low-income families how to eat, budget, shop and cook via the UC CalFresh Program and Expanded Food and Nutrition Education Program. The classes are supported by the USDA.
"The Plan, Shop, Save and Cook curriculum teaches budgeting, shopping, and cooking to help grow healthy families. Eating Smart, Being Active curriculum is also used. It pairs nutrition education, meal planning, and money management with physical activity. Over the last year these programs taught over 40,000 adults and youth about nutrition and healthy living in Fresno County," Stenger wrote.
"We are in the midst of a youth diabetes epidemic that is perpetuated by all of these sugary drinks," said Harold Goldstein, one of the report's authors and the executive director at the California Center for Public Health Advocacy.
Research cited in the policy brief found that the percent of children under the age of 12 who drink at least one sugar-sweetened beverage per day dropped between 2005 and 2012, however sugar beverage consumption increased among adolescents. Even in groups where sugar-sweetened beverage consumption declined between 2000 and 2010, the drinks continue to be a significant contributor to total caloric intake, especially for children and adolescents.
Appeal-Democrat reporter Andrew Creasey noted in the story that UC Cooperative Extension in Yuba and Sutter counties is helping teenagers understand the high level of sugar in their favorite beverages by displaying white sugar in the equivalent quantities.
"It's pretty shocking for them to see how much sugar is in these beverages," said UCCE nutrition educator Chelsey Slattery. "We talk about the health effects, the potential weight gain and how it can lead to diabetes and heart issues."
Slattery and her colleagues also teach students how to read a food label and how to be wary of advertisements.
"Sunny Delight has things like a sun and an orange on its label that make you think it's a healthy beverage, but it's only 5 percent juice," Slattery said.
Slattery encourages students to drink 100 percent juice, milk or water, the article said.