With a range of nutritional challenges facing South Africa today, Woolworths, in co-operation with the Sports Science Institute, has launched dietician-led ‘Moms Tours’ to give parents the opportunity to learn about healthy eating habits, good food options, balanced lunch boxes and smart snacking ideas. The tours are part of Woolworths Educational Programme for primary schools, which has been helping teachers and parents teach Grade 4 learners in some 1500 schools about nutrition, healthy living and caring for the environment for over eight years, and is part of Woolworths Good business journey. The first tour took place at Woolworths Cavendish Square on 17 May at 19:00. Customers and parents of learners from schools in the Southern Suburbs were invited to attend. Dieticians from Woolworths and the Sports Science Institute took small groups of parents around the store and provided valuable information about good food choices and the importance of exercise in a healthy, balanced lifestyle. “We know that South Africa experiences a range of childhood nutritional challenges from increasing obesity in certain areas to persistent malnutrition in others,” explains the Woolworths Educational Programme’s manager, Pieter Twine. “It is vital that teachers, parents and children understand the importance of good nutrition and learn to make healthy choices.” Snacking and lunchboxes were two of the main focuses of the event. Parents were provided with useful guidelines to help them understand the nutritional information provided on packs and on how to make exercise fun and interesting for the whole family, and were encouraged to ask questions throughout the store visit. “Parents always ask me whether kids should be snacking, and my answer is definitely yes,” says Woolworths Dietician Maryke van Zyl. “Due to growth, development and high activity levels it’s essential for kids to snack, but one must distinguish between snacks and treats. “Snack foods are foods that are more nutrient-rich than treats. Snack foods contain more nutrients per gram of food when compared with treats, which often contain larger quantities of sugar and fat, are more energy dense and are therefore best consumed occasionally.” “Parents also need to be aware of the importance of ensuring that snacks do not replace meals, as well as of adjusting snacks to their child’s individual activity level, growth and appetite.” The importance of exercise was also stressed during the tour. Parents were encouraged to get their children involved in school physical activity or after-hours sports programme, and to find time for the whole family to exercise together. More Moms Tours, which will be organised through schools, will be rolling out to other regions in the near future and will be offered during mornings as well as in the early evening to accommodate working parents. For more information or to book your place on a Woolworths ‘Mom’s Tour’ near you, contact amandamhluzi@woolworths.co.za.

With a range of nutritional challenges facing South Africa today, Woolworths, in co-operation with the Sports Science Institute, has launched dietician-led ‘Moms Tours’ to give parents the opportunity to learn about healthy eating habits, good food options, balanced lunch boxes and smart snacking ideas.