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University of Minnesota Extension

Health U

Health U: A Nutrition Curriculum for Teenagers with Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities: A Garden-Enhanced Nutrition Education Curriculum for Upper Elementary School Children is an educational program for adolescents and young adults with mild to moderate intellectual disabilities. Health U helps students with intellectual disabilities learn about nutrition, physical activity, and living a healthy lifestyle. Classes cater to students’ specific learning needs.

Downs syndrome woman doing exercise with instructor


Program participants will learn about:

  • MyPlate nutritional guidelines and the five food groups.
  • The benefits of eating more fruits and vegetables and fewer foods with added fats and sugars.
  • How to plan a balanced meal.
  • Making healthy choices in snacks and when eating out.

Space and time requirements

The Health U program is made up of ten, 60-minute lessons. All sessions can be adapted to meet the learning needs of participants and within reason fit the space and time needs of the partnering agency.

More information

The Health U program was developed by dietitians and educators in association with the University of Massachusetts Medical School. Each lesson includes a short discussion of new concepts, a hands-on learning activity, time to engage in movement or physical activity, and a taste test.

To find out more about this program or explore the possibilities of this program being offered at your agency, contact the SNAP-Ed team.

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