WIC Food Choices More Nutritious as Fruit Added
On October 1, WIC (Women, Infants, and Children) State agencies began offering a wider variety of foods including fruit.
WIC is a federally funded program established by the U.S Department of Agriculture in 1972. It was established to assists low-income families with young children to purchase nutritious food. WIC has until now provided vouchers for food staples, such as milk, cheese, peanut butter, cereal, juice, eggs, infant cereal and formula.
In December 2007, the Federal Register published a revised WIC food package. The new food package is based on the 2005 Dietary Guidelines for Americans and the infant feeding practice guideline of the American Academy of Pediatrics. These are the first significant changes in 30 years.
WIC’s food choices now include more healthy food. Families can now use the vouchers to buy fruit, vegetables, whole grains like brown rice and oats. Families may also buy jarred baby food, soy milk, tofu, canned beans and sardines.
To keep the costs at about the same level, the WIC nutritious food program has reduced the amount of eggs, milk, cheese, and juice among the choices.
Recipients of WIC are required to go to classes and other educational opportunities, which help to teach them about proper nutrition. Some health officials claim that the money spent on WIC may save as much as four times that amount in later medical costs because of preventative health and nutritional education.
The changes in the WIC nutritious food program are good. More fruit, more vegetables.