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Taking a "Bite Into A Healthy Lifestyle"
Release Date: February 24, 2015

Taking a "Bite Into A Healthy Lifestyle"

(Newton, NJ) March is designated as National Nutrition Month® by the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics as an education and information campaign that focuses on making healthy eating choices and encourages physical activity to promote a healthy lifestyle. This year individuals are encouraged to take a "Bite Into a Healthy Lifestyle." One way the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics suggests accomplishing this is for individuals to develop an eating and physical activity plan that is centered on consuming fewer calories and getting daily exercise. Maintaining a healthy weight and reducing the risk of chronic diseases are also highlighted through this year's campaign. "Our Division of Senior Services offers opportunities for individuals 60 and older to enjoy a warm, healthy meal and to join one of the many health and wellness programs," said Stephen Gruchacz, Administrator for the Sussex County Department of Human Services.

Warm healthy meals are offered at the Sussex County's three congregate nutrition sites - Vernon Senior Center, Franklin Senior Center and the Hopatcong Senior Center - Monday through Friday during lunch hours. The meals for these programs are provided by the Newton Medical Center's Food and Nutrition Department and are overseen by a dietitian to ensure they meet the one-third Recommended Dietary Allowance (RDA), which is established by the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA). The dietary staff at Newton Medical Center takes great care in implementing a menu that not only takes into consideration the nutritional needs of the participants they are serving, but also personal suggestions of the participants. Jean Batty of Franklin states, "The quality of the food is excellent. The food we get is delicious. The people are happy with the food they are eating. It is nice to get real mashed potatoes instead of instant, and the soups the cook prepares are wonderful."

Through the Sussex County Division of Senior Services, Project Healthy Living Initiative, various wellness programs are also offered to seniors. Project Healthy Bones is a peer led, 24 week exercise and education program for men and woman designed to stabilize bone density, increase strength, balance and flexibility. Project Healthy Bones is currently offered at the Senior Center at Knoll Heights, in Sparta, NJ; the Homestead Rehabilitation and HealthCare Center, in Frankford, NJ; the Lafayette Municipal Building, in Lafayette, NJ; and at Liberty Towers, in Newton, NJ.

Move Today is a peer led 12 week non-aerobic exercise program using resistance bands designed to improve flexibility, balance, stamina, muscle strength, posture and body mechanics. Move Today is currently being offered at the Bristol Glen United Methodist Homes, in Newton, NJ; the Vernon Senior Center, in Vernon, NJ; and the Homestead Rehabilitation and HealthCare Center, in Frankford, NJ.

In recognition of National Nutrition Month®, the Sussex County Division of Senior Services is encouraging individuals to attend an informative and educational program "Serving Up Good Nutrition" being offered at the three nutrition sites:

Tuesday, March 10, 2015, at 10:15 a.m.
Hopatcong Senior Center
Hopatcong Civic Center
42 Lakeside Blvd.
Hopatcong, NJ 07843
Tel: 973-398-2608

Wednesday, March 18, 2015, at 10:15 a.m.
Vernon Senior Center
21 Church Street
Vernon, NJ 07462
Tel: 973-764-5454

Tuesday, March 24, 2015, at 10:15 a.m.
Franklin Senior Center
George Labance Lane
Franklin, NJ 07416
Tel: 973-827-2973

At the conclusion of the program, participants are welcome to stay and enjoy a delicious and healthy meal. Please note that reservations are required at least 24 hours in advance in order to reserve a meal.

If you have any questions or would like more information about the Congregate Nutrition Program or any of the Project Healthy Living Programs offered, please contact the Sussex County Department of Human Services, Division of Senior Services at 973-579-0555 extension 1285 or email Christina Marks, Congregate Nutrition Program Coordinator, at cmarks@sussex.nj.us for additional information.

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