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Health and nutrition

Learn how to prepare nutritious meals on a budget, techniques to handle food safely, food prep and preservation, and ways to be physically active.

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Welcome to MSU Extension’s Health and Nutrition page. Our Health and Nutrition Staff is committed to delivering high-quality and affordable education to serve the needs of Macomb County’s children, youth, families and older adults. Programming focuses on selecting and preparing nutritious foods on a budget, the importance of eating a healthy diet and being physically active, as well as techniques for safe food handling, preparation and preservation. Learn more...

If you are interested in attending one of our programs or scheduling a program for your group, call 586-469-6440 or email us at

Nutrition education programs

Each of the following programs are six-weeks in length and are taught throughout the community, including but not limited to, community centers, churches, schools and at the Macomb County MSU Extension office. Participants meet on a weekly basis for approximately 60-90 minutes. The programs are free and require that half of the participants be Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) eligible. If online learning is more your style, check out the “My Way to Wellness” program.

Eat Healthy, Be Active is a research/evidence-based, interactive nutrition program for adults. Participants learn the skills needed to make healthy eating and regular physical activity a part of their lifestyle. Learn more...
Eat Smart, Live Strong is a research/evidence-based, interactive nutrition program for adults 55 and older. Participants learn the importance of increasing fruit and vegetable consumption as well as increasing physical activity. Learn more...
Cooking for One is a hands-on program for adults who often cook meals for one person.  Lessons teach those living on their own how cooking for one can be simple and enjoyable.
My Way to Wellness is MSU Extension’s online nutrition education/healthy lifestyle program. Learn More...
Teen Cuisine is a program for youth in 6th through 12th grade. Participants will learn cooking skills, food safety, the benefits of good nutrition and physical activity. There are six 90-minute classes total and can be customized for different ages, abilities and time constraints.
Show Me Nutrition is a program designed for Pre-K through 8th graders that consist of age-appropriate, interactive lessons that help students gain skills to make healthy lifestyle choices. This program is taught at schools where at least 50% of students are eligible for the National School Lunch Program. The program can be held during the regular school day or at after-school programs. Learn more..

Food and nutrition links:

Food safety and preservation

Harmful bacteria are usually to blame for food borne illnesses and everyone is at risk. Some groups, such as infants, young children, pregnant women and their unborn babies, older adults, and people with weakened immune systems are at a greater risk for experiencing a more serious illness. Four simple steps can help reduce that risk. Learn more To Fight Bac® 

Some frequently asked questions that MSU Extension Health and Nutrition staff receive regarding food safety include:

ServSafe certification

Picture of hand washing at a sink

According to Michigan law, all food service establishments must employ full-time managers that are ServSafe® certified. Earn ServSafe® certification by successfully passing the ServSafe® Food Protection Manager Certification exam. Prepare for the exam by attending one of our 8-hour workshops, for those who have previously been certified, or one of our 16-hour workshops, for those new to the industry. These workshops are presented by a certified ServSafe® instructor.  Learn more...

Click here to go to the ServSafeR Website.

Food preservation

Workshops that teach up-to-date food preservation skills and techniques are offered throughout the year. Using the latest research-based information and methods, participants learn how to safely preserve their food by either freezing, boiling water bath canning, pressure canning or dehydrating.  Learn more...

Click here to go to the National Center for Home Food Preservation website.

Cottage Food Law

In 2010, Michigan adopted the Cottage Food Law, which permits individuals to produce certain non-potentially hazardous products in their home kitchens (the kitchen of the person's primary domestic residence) to sell direct to consumers at farmers markets, farm markets, roadside stands or other direct markets . Food safety is critical when selling to the public. MSU Extension offers workshops and online training to prepare individuals for preparing and selling cottage foods safely and successfully.  Learn more...

Click here to go to the website on Michigan Cottage Foods Information.

Disease prevention and management

Prevention and self- management of chronic conditions is very important. MSU Extension educators provide the following community workshops.

Dining With Diabetes

Dining With Diabetes is a four-session course designed for people at risk of diabetes or who have diabetes, as well as their family members. Participants will learn how to prepare healthy meals using less fat, how to make meals using less sodium and sugar without reducing flavor and enjoyment, the causes of diabetes, tools for managing diabetes, and the importance of diet and exercise in managing diabetes. You will also have the opportunity to sample a variety of healthy foods and take home recipes so that you can make them yourself.  Learn more...

A Matter of Balance 

A Matter of Balance is an award-winning program designed to reduce older adults’ fear of falling, increase confidence, and improve activity levels. A Matter of Balance helps older adults improve flexibility, balance, and strength as they learn to view falls as controllable, set goals for increasing physical activity, and make changes in their homes to reduce their fall risk.

A Matter of Balance is offered as an eight-week series with two-hour sessions held weekly, or a four-week series with two-hour sessions twice a week.

Learn more… 

Personal Action Towards Health (PATH) - Diabetes & Chronic Pain

PATH provides the skills and tools to manage chronic health conditions. People who participate in PATH workshops are better equipped to face the daily challenges of living with one or more chronic conditions. PATH is a six-week series facilitated by two trained leaders.

PATH participants learn strategies including how to manage sick days, communicating with healthcare providers and family members, overcoming stress, pacing everyday activities more easily, and setting personal goals.

Learn more… 

Powerful tools for caregivers

This highly effective evidence-based, self-care education program is for family caregivers.  The program builds skills caregivers need to take better care of themselves as they provide care for others.  Caregivers learn to minimize the potentially negative impacts of caregiving in a six-week program emphasizing self-care and empowerment.  Self-care tools include: reduce personal stress; change negative self-talk; communicate their needs to family members and health care; recognize the messages in their emotions, deal with difficult feelings; and make tough caregiving decisions.

Learn more...

Tai Chi for arthritis and falls prevention

Tai Chi for Arthritis and Falls Prevention combines slow movement, deep breathing, and focused intention to help people improve strength, balance and posture while helping prevent falls. Tai Chi for Arthritis and Falls Prevention is led by a certified instructor, with each session including:

  • Warm-up and cool-down exercises
  • One or two movements per lesson, progressively leading to completing six basic core movements and six advanced extension movements
  • Breathing techniques
  • Tai chi principles relating to improving physical and mental balance

Tai Chi for Arthritis and Falls Prevention classes are offered as a series of 20 one-hour sessions (either weekly or twice per week).

Learn more…

WISE (Wellness Initiative for Senior Education) 

Wellness Initiative for Senior Education (WISE) is an evidence-based wellness program for older adults looking to stay healthy and meet new people.

WISE’s interactive lessons provide valuable education on health and wellness topics including celebrating healthy lifestyle choices, valuing generational and cultural diversity, medication use, stress management, depression and substance use. WISE meets weekly for six weeks.