Focus on Nutrition
In honor of the more than 40,000 Larimer County residents that lack access, at times, to enough food for an active, healthy life, the Food Bank places a high priority on providing nutritious food for our clients. We work hard to offer foods that promote good health, such as fruits, vegetables, whole grains and lean proteins. We believe that making healthy choices available to our guests will nourish both body and soul and help stabilize lives and build a vibrant community.
Hunger and health are deeply connected. People who are food insecure are disproportionally affected by diet-related diseases such as diabetes and high blood pressure. Food insecurity is also linked to poor psychological and behavioral health. On the flip side, with proper nutrition, children can grow, learn and thrive. When adults don’t have to worry about feeding their families, they are healthier, more productive and can make a positive impact on our community. And when seniors have the nutrition they need, they can maintain well-being or better manage illness.
Hunger’s Impact on Health
In 2019, the Food Bank distributed nearly 3.3 million pounds of fresh produce. In addition to the donations we receive each day from our retail food rescue program, our Food Resource Manager works closely with area growers to source donated produce. In addition, the Food Bank has partnered with the Gardens on Spring Creek to encourage backyard gardeners to donate their surplus produce via the Plant It Forward program.
The Food Bank’s Food Share program works hard to make the healthy choice the easy choice. We employ best practices in the field of nutrition to encourage healthy eating. Displaying fresh produce at the front of our pantry has increased produce selection. Based on research conducted in cooperation with Cornell University, we also have learned that providing prominent placement of whole grain bread encourages our guests to select the healthier option.
Healthy Food Drives
We know more than ever about the link between food insecurity, poverty and diet-related disease. For three decades, countless groups have hosted food drives for our Food Bank. To help us provide the most nutritious foods possible for our guests, we encourage the community to transform the traditional food drive to one focused on giving the gift of health. Learn more…
In 2019, our Nutritious Kitchen prepared more than 196,000 fresh meals and snacks for our child and senior meal programs. Through our partnership with Volunteers of America, the Food Bank continues to expand our programming for senior meals.
Periodically, we reach out to our Food Share guests to learn more about their diets and diet-related health concerns. We use the information to develop effective nutrition education programs.
- 88.7% of clients surveyed would eat less than 3 servings of fruits and vegetables per day if they didn’t have access to Food Share.
- 55.8% of clients surveyed indicated that Tasting Table has helped them add fresh fruits and vegetables to their diets.
- 59% of clients surveyed said Tasting Table has taught them new ways to prepare meals.
- 70% of clients surveyed reported eating better due to Food Share; 30% reported feeling better; 15% stated better mental focus.