The Buy-Eat-Live Better Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program Education (SNAP-Ed) program addresses Montana’s goals for increasing food security and healthier food choices. Participants learn to make the healthy choice the easy choice through focusing on nutrition, as well as physical activity. On the Flathead Reservation, SNAP-ED Nutrition Educator Ginger Pitts reached 1,041 children and adults with 56 lessons/series. Students in first, third, and fifth grade received six lessons focusing on healthy eating, food safety and staying physically active. Eighty-six percent of the youth improved their diet quality. Many students reported reducing consumption of sugary beverages and increasing fruit and vegetable consumption. Eighty-eight percent of adults showed improvement in diet quality as well as an increase in physical activity.

  • A senior woman who attended the series at the Flathead Reservation Extension Office (FREO) says the classes helped her cook in a new, healthier way. “It tastes so much better to use fresh vegetables - a lot better than just using foods from a box or can.” She says learning how to cook with spices instead of salt has been good to lower her high blood pressure. She also says she is walking a few blocks every day with her walker and practicing the chair exercises taught in class.
  • The mother of a first grade student saw Pitts in the produce section at the grocery and introduced herself. She said, “My daughter loves bringing home the newsletters and sharing with our family what you are teaching her class. She’s been asking me to buy different fruits and vegetables (she held up her two bags of vegetables to show) so as a family we are trying new things! Thanks!”

To learn more about Flathead Reservation MSU Extension, see their program highlights here: Flathead Reservation Program Highlights