“I always stop by here,” Wright said. “There’s a good farmer’s market over here and they have good apple juice and cranberry juice.”
After Wright was given a clean bill of health at the fair, hosted by the Department of Health and Mental Hygiene, Office of Faith Initiatives, the American Heart Association, the Brooklyn Borough President and others, he said he has always paid close attention to his salt intake.
“I always say eat to live, and don’t live to eat,” he explained. “I work out and I drink a lot of seltzer water.”
After some welcoming remarks, Borough President Eric Adams donned an apron and gave a lesson on how to eat healthy.
“This is an important initiative and we’re really sending out the alarm across the borough and across the city,” Adams said. “I know that we consume, particularly our young people, on a diet that is over consumed in salt.”
Adams announced that heart disease is now the “number one killer in Brooklyn,” and the time for health awareness is now.
“We received these ailments based on the intake of salt, and that’s why we have come together to really address the issues around the overconsumption of salt,” he said.
Dr. Aletha Maybank, assistant commissioner for the Health Department, stressed to residents the importance of eating healthy.
“There’s no magic answer, but the more fruits and vegetables we have in our diets, the better it is,” Maybank said. “We should have five to 12 servings per day.”
She said that it may be difficult to shop for fruits and vegetables and afford a healthy diet, she noted the nearby farmers market and the nearly 140 others throughout the city that provide healthy alternatives.
Maybank and members of the Health Department also handed out $2 farmers market coupons - or “Health Bucks” – through a program that has handed out out nearly $300,000 over the last couple of years.
“This is not about the number of years that you want to live, but it’s about the quality of life you want to have,” she said.