Extension hires registered dietician to enhance nutritional programs for communities

Extension hires registered dietician to enhance nutritional programs for communities

Extension hires registered dietician to enhance nutritional programs for communities

RENO –University of Nevada, Reno Extension has welcomed Hans Weding as a registered dietician who will work with a variety of programs to provide information and guidance on wellness, health and fitness to communities statewide.

One of the programs Weding will be working with is Nevada Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program Education (SNAP-Ed). The Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program, formerly known as food stamps, provides nutrition benefits to supplement the food budgets of those with lower incomes to help improve their nutritional well-being. SNAP-Ed is the educational outreach associated with the program to teach people how to make their benefits stretch further, how to shop for and cook healthy meals, and how to stay physically active.

Weding will work to ensure those who receive SNAP benefits, and other Nevadans with low incomes, are having their nutritional needs met and are equipped with information to make healthy eating choices. As part of SNAP-Ed, Weding will be working with the Healthy Kids, Healthy Start Program, which provides resources for pre-k children and their parents so they can make healthy food and lifestyle choices together.

Weding is currently focusing on a project to work with substance abuse counselors, to provide them with additional information and training on health and wellness, especially for limited resource Nevadans, so that they can then share the information with other counselors in their area. Weding is also working on other projects such as analyzing recipes being distributed to ensure they meet dietary guidelines, and working to implement more programs that will assist the efforts of SNAP-Ed.

“We are fortunate to be able to bring Hans and his experience to Extension,” Eric Killian, Extension southern area director, said. “I am looking forward to Hans enhancing our current health and nutrition programs and meeting the needs of our local citizens.”

Prior to becoming a registered dietitian, Weding was a chef for over 25 years and worked as a personal trainer and with those struggling with substance abuse. Wanting to continue helping others, especially with their nutrition, he became a registered dietitian and has worked in hospitals as a dietary manager for the past six years and has been working in the clinical setting for the past year.

“I’m excited to be here and to be able to work with the community,” Weding said. “The biggest reason for me to become a registered dietitian was to be able to help people, and it’s great to have the opportunity to do that with Extension.”