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Sep 27, 2016 1:32 PMPublication: The East Hampton Press

Wellness Foundation To Host Fall Seminar On Healthy Eating Habits

Sep 27, 2016 2:47 PM

The Wellness Foundation in Sag Harbor will host its annual fall seminar on healthy eating habits for families on Thursday, September 29, at the East Hampton Middle School from 7 to 9 p.m.

According to Jennifer Taylor executive director of education for the Wellness Foundation, this is the 11th year of the seminar after the foundation was created in 2005. It will be hosted by Robyn O’Brien, a former financial analyst for food companies and a mother of four, who has become a strong advocate for healthy eating habits for children.

“One of Robyn’s children had a life threatening allergic reaction to a food product that really made her think twice about what her kids eat,” Ms. Taylor said. “She’ll talk about the connection between the food children commonly eat and how it affects their health, most importantly how to protect children from allergens in foods.”

Ms. O’Brien now advises various food companies and nonprofit organizations on what are the safest ingredients to use in food products, current data on food allergies, and the double standard of certain companies’ methods.

“Kraft’s mac and cheese has all of these artificial additives in their American products, but none of those additives are found in their products sold in the U.K.,” Ms. O’Brien said. “If you look into current databases and see the rates of pediatric cancer, diabetes, ADHD, and food allergies in this generation of kids, you can’t unlearn that information.”

Ms. Taylor said that the seminar will also talk about food additives and preservatives, along with what goes into processed foods that many children eat for their lunches.

“Parents will learn the real definition of ‘organic’ when it comes to food,” Ms. O’Brien said. “We have so many options today and it’s up to the parents to make the effort to know which ones are best for their children.”

“We call the East End ‘The Wellness zone,’” Ms. Taylor said. “We want to make healthy eating habits affordable and accessible.”

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