ENVIRONMENTAL Services at Coleraine Borough Council recently delivered a six-week ‘Cook-it’ programme with young people and adults, aimed at raising awareness of healthy eating to assist weight management.
The programme formed part of a wider initiative called ‘Food, Fun & Fitness’ which combines specific one-to-one dietary advice from the Northern Health and Social Care Trust and one-to-one mentoring with fitness instructors at local leisure centres.
The ‘Cook-it’ element of the course is based on the Food Standards Agency’s ‘Eat Well’ plate guidelines. It outlines the five food groups: fruit and vegetables; starchy carbohydrates; milk and dairy products; meat, fish and other protein foods as well as foods containing fat and sugar. The guidelines explain the portions required to achieve a healthy and balanced diet.
Debbie Keys, Council’s Health and Well Being Officer at Council said: “Each week during the six week programme, participants focused on one of the five food groups, completing interactive quizzes and activities on the importance on healthy eating, finally preparing two different recipes in the kitchen.
“Those attending worked together in small teams to prepare ingredients as they enjoyed cooking their meals, using healthier cooking methods such as oven baking, grilling or stir frying.
“Feedback has been positive, with participants making long term changes to their shopping list and day-to-day cooking practices.”