Sampson County’s Center for North Cooperative Extension is working to help people make healthier choices.
Lethia Lee, program assistant with the Expanded Food Nutrition Education Program (EFNEP), is inviting the public to take classes at the local extension office, 55 Agriculture Place, Clinton. The purpose is to provide education on behavior changes and losing weight at the same time.
“That’s what nutrition is all about,” Lee said. “They have to be committed to making changes in the form of eating and exercising in order for it to work.”
She added that the EFNEP and encouragement for a lifestyle change is an alternative to diets.
“We all know that diets don’t work,” Lee said. “A lot of people commit to diets, but if they would commit to making behavior changes as far as their eating and exercising habits, it’ll work better for them. That’s what we teach — behavior changes.”
She’ll be working with groups from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m., on the first Tuesday of each month for six weeks. A start date has not been set, but Lee would like to have a time to accommodate the schedules of participants. She would like to begin before the end of March. Each class will have at least 10 participants and will include hands-on lessons and other activities, described as “fun stuff” by Lee.
“I enjoy seeing the results of what happens once they take the classes,” Lee said. “They become committed to doing the things that we’re teaching. It’s really beneficial, if they commit to doing those things. It’s not so much about losing weight, it’s about being healthy. That what I want the main goal to be. Once you get healthy, the weight loss is a benefit of being healthy.”
Some of the EFNEP lessons involve eating vegetables, shopping on a budget, and exercising. EFNEP is associated with Cooperative Extension, North Carolina A&T University, North Carolina State University and the United States Department of Agriculture. The mission of the federally funded education program also collaborates with organizations such as Eat Smart and Move More and aims to reduce rising obesity rates. Many families and youths with limited resources also benefit from the program.
For more information or to sign up for the session, contact Lee at 910-592-7161.
Reach Chase Jordan at 910-249-4617. Follow us on Twitter at @SampsonInd and like us on Facebook.