The right food can help you get fit. (Citizen file)

The right food can help you get fit. (Citizen file)

Walk, talk and cook with CGC’s FoodFit program

A new program offering food, fun and friends is being rolled out by Cowichan Green Community.

The CGC has received two year’s worth of funding to run the FoodFit course, aimed at bringing low-income community members together to set goals, learn skills, and to make changes in their overall health and fitness.

“There are three components of our FoodFit course: knowledge, exercise and cooking,” explained CGC staff member and facilitator, Alyssa Loucks.

Each session will start with a talk about basic nutrition in a way that’s easy to understand. Following that, the group takes a half-hour walk where participants can track their steps with pedometers given to them at the start of the program.

Each session ends with cooking.

“Participants would all cook a meal together and then sit down, share the meal, and take home any leftovers,” Loucks said.

The group, a maximum of 15, will gather every Wednesday for three hours (3:30 p.m.-6:30 p.m.) for 12 weeks.

The first session is May 10.

Worry not, if you miss the first intake, there’ll be seven other chances to participate.

“We have funding for two years and the program itself is 12 weeks,” Loucks said. “We have eight 12-week programs in total.”

According to a press release issued by Cowichan Green Community, many preventable diseases are linked to unhealthy eating and low physical activity and low-income families often face barriers to healthy eating, and as such it contributes to higher rates of diet-related illness.

The free program is funded by Community Food Centres Canada and the Public Health Agency of Canada.

“We’re seeing that small, consistent changes not only make people feel better, but can add up to measurable results in things like blood pressure and resting heart rate, all of which offers a great feedback loop,” said Kathryn Scharf, chief operating officer at Community Food Centres Canada. “Even as we continue to work toward a time when everyone can afford the food they need, FoodFit empowers people to make immediate changes in their lives, while also connecting them to broader community and social supports.”

FoodFit is geared towards adults 18 and up.

Those still not sure if they’d be a good candidate but who are interested can touch base with Loucks.

“People, if they’re interested, can come and talk to me and I can sit down with them and we can do an intake form together,” she said.

For more information or to register for FoodFit call Alyssa Loucks, at 250-748-8506 or alyssa@cowichangreencommunity.org