WIC Promotes Healthy Eating During National Nutrition Month
March is National Nutrition Month and this year’s theme is “Fuel for the Future.” The Women, Infants and Children (WIC) office at Albany Medical Center is raising awareness about the importance of having access to healthy foods and wants families to keep in mind that eating in a sustainable way helps nourish our bodies, while also protecting the environment.
The WIC program promotes food nutrition through education and provides benefits to help families access nutritious food. WIC benefits are available for eligible pregnant, postpartum, and breastfeeding individuals, and parents or caregivers of infants and children up to age five. WIC benefits can be used at participating grocery stores and farmers markets in New York State. Some of the approved foods include fruits and vegetables, eggs, milk, whole grain bread, baby food and formula, and much more.
Ivy and Annie, ages 3 and 2 of Albany, first enrolled with WIC in 2017. Their parents said the WIC team helped them through the process, and they’re thankful Ivy and Annie now have easier access to heathy food.
“Both Ivy and Annie are below the normal height and weight for their age groups, but with the help of the WIC program, they are growing much better now,” they said. “Our experience with WIC has always been wonderful. We hope every qualified Capital Region family knows they can get help from the WIC program.”
WIC also offers breastfeeding classes and supports new parents in various ways.
“My boyfriend and I attended WIC’s breastfeeding classes and were trained to use a breast pump, and the WIC team answered all of our questions,” said one new mom who is a part of the WIC program. “Plus, I loved that the team called every few months to check in on me! I didn't know how great it would feel to have someone checking on me, listening to me, and letting me ask a thousand questions. They were always supportive!”
“We want our community members to know we’re here for them and their families, and we can give them the necessary tools to make informed food choices,” said Kathy Patton, director of WIC at Albany Medical Center.
To learn more about National Nutrition Month or to speak with the WIC team at Albany Medical Center, call 518-432-4033.