Millions of Seniors Rely on SNAP for Food

SNAP—or the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program—is an essential safety net program for millions of older adults who would otherwise be at risk for hunger and hunger-related health problems. In fact, 22 percent of households receiving SNAP (nearly 4.7 million) have at least one adult age 60 or older. As the U.S. population ages and SNAP faces the prospect of changes that could affect the future of the program, it becomes all the more important to examine the dynamics around this …

Proposal to Cut SNAP Funding Raises Serious Concerns for Older Americans

“Without SNAP, I don’t know how I’d be able to afford to eat.” It’s something I heard often from low-income older clients while doing Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) outreach as an AmeriCorps volunteer.[i] SNAP—formerly known as food stamps—is a federal and state-administered program that provides resources to low-income people so they can buy food. And it works: SNAP has a proven track record of effectively reducing hunger. Today, millions of older Americans live on low fixed incomes, forcing many …

Want to Protect Your Brain? Start With Your Heart

In February, we are surrounded by hearts. They’re everywhere—in the grocery store, shopping malls and email inboxes. You may also hear more about heart health, because February is  American Heart Month. Taking steps to strengthen your heart yields a bonus—you’ll be protecting your brain as well. It turns out that heart and brain health are inexorably linked, according to a new Global Council on Brain Health (GCBH) report on brain health and nutrition. With every beat, the heart pumps 20 …

New Report Highlights Healthiest Foods for Your Brain

As the executive director of the Global Council on Brain Health (GCBH), I am always on the lookout for brain-healthy foods. I scan grocery aisles for chocolate bars with more than 70 percent cocoa, feel that I’m stimulating my brain when I down my morning coffee and even feel virtuous when drinking a glass or two of red wine. Turns out all my assumptions have been wrong. The GCBH recently released a major report on how nutrition affects the brain. …

New Nutrition Facts Label: What’s in It for Older Adults?

Since the passage of the Nutrition Labeling and Education Act of 1990, Nutrition Facts labeling has been mandatory for most packaged foods. The majority of food items sold in grocery stores are processed and packaged. Nutrition Facts labels provide consumers with the amount of calories and nutrients in these food items, which can help them make healthier choices. Now more than ever, Americans, especially older adults, are using Nutrition Facts labels when they shop for food. In May, the FDA …