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The Nutrition Education & Wellness Program

A critical aspect of staying healthy for people living with HIV/AIDS (PLWHA) is eating well.  Many people find it challenging to eat a diet rich in fruits, vegetables, whole grains and lean protein all the time.  However, not getting enough of these foods can cause nutrient deficiencies, muscle loss and weight loss which can all negatively affect the immune system.  Through nutrition education, our team has created a dynamic program which includes individual nutrition counseling sessions and group nutrition education classes.

At GMHC, The Nutrition Education & Wellness Program provides individual nutrition counseling sessions that are goal oriented and based upon one’s unique needs.  If you experience side effects like stomach/digestive problems, unwanted weight loss or weight gain, decreased energy levels or other chronic illnesses like diabetes, high cholesterol, high blood pressure, hepatitis or kidney disease, a registered dietitian can help manage your condition through specific nutritional recommendations proven to help your issues.  Even if you are simply improving your nutritional intake overall or are interested in foods to enhance an exercise plan, seeing a registered dietitian is invaluable.  During the nutrition counseling visit we provide a Body Mass Assessment where the nutritionist will determine the percentage of muscle and fat mass in a client’s body using a body composition test called Bioelectrical Impedance Analysis (BIA).  Based on this assessment, a nutritionist will provide individualized recommendations.

We also offer 6 nutrition education classes each month which cover a wide array of HIV/AIDS related topics such as Food and Water Safety, HIV and Exercise, Women’s Health and HIV/AIDS and Eating Healthy on a Budget.  A highlight of the program is Chef Carlin, who comes once a month to demonstrate how to make healthy recipes using affordable ingredients.  We even publish the Nutrition Quarterly Newsletter with timely nutrition information and seasonal recipes. 

In honor of National Nutrition Month, we will be having our annual Wellness Day called A New You! Day of Wellness on Friday, March 19th from 10 am - 4 pm for our clients.  We invite GMHC clients to come relax, rejuvenate and indulge with different alternative therapies and nutrition.  The workshops throughout the day are: Nutrition and the Brain, Women and Sexuality, Homemade Beauty Products, Strengthen your Core Exercise Class, Emotional Health Over 50, How to Choose the Right Nutritional Supplements, Managing Stress and Restorative Yoga.  We also have morning and afternoon workshops in Spanish and will be serving a healthy breakfast and lunch.  To register, clients can pick up a brochure on the 12th floor reception desk at GMHC, or call 212.367.1259/nutrition@gmhc.org for more information.

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