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Second Harvest Nutrition Programs Change Lives – Elvia’s Story

During the month of October, Second Harvest is focusing on raising awareness around Partner Agencies and Nutrition Education.  

As diabetes and poor nutrition continue to be an epidemic in the United States, Second Harvest Food Bank Santa Cruz County nutrition programs volunteer ambassadors are fighting on the front lines against these preventable illnesses.  Second Harvest distributes healthy produce and offers nutrition education and even Zumba at distribution sites across Santa Cruz County. These programs are having a positive impact in our community.

Elvia Lopez is a perfect example.

From client, to volunteer, to advocate, Elvia is a success story.  Volunteering for Second Harvest for over 5 years as a nutrition ambassador, Elvia has lost excess weight, improved her knowledge of  the importance of good nutrition and exercise, and helped many others do the same.

I want to stay healthy so I can keep helping the families that come to our center.

Before visiting a Second Harvest distribution site, Elvia weighed 170 pounds.  As she began putting into practice what she was learning the program she began to lose weight, feel more energized, and ultimately became happier.  She said “You are what you eat”. She slowly changed everything in her refrigerator and, as a result, is now at a healthy 135 pounds.

Second Harvest nutrition program ambassadors and facilitators teach a monthly lesson on a wide range of topics including healthy digestion, how food affects mental health, food as medicine, raising a healthy eater, plant based diets and more.  They also distribute fresh produce and offer a cooking demonstration of the “recipe of the month”.

Elvia would like to see more people participating in these programs and encourages them to bring their children so they can learn the benefits of a healthy diet and a healthy lifestyle.  Second Harvest nutrition programs, coupled with fresh produce distribution, give everyone an opportunity to choose a healthy lifestyle and be happier…just like Elvia.

Click here to learn more about Second Harvest Food Bank nutrition education and site distribution. Elvia Lopez
Second Harvest Food Bank
Nutrition Ambassador