A prescription for produce turned one girl’s failing health around
Newman’s Own gives all of its profits to charity, like the one that provides low-income families with access to fresh fruits and vegetables.
Four years ago, Alaijah Borden sat with her mother, Sheryl Browne, in a pediatrician’s office at New York’s Harlem Hospital Center. At the time, Alaijah was 10 years old, significantly overweight and severely asthmatic — with attacks that had grown so severe that they were sending her to the emergency room every month.
The doctor didn’t waste time with the usual lecture about diet and exercise. Instead she pulled out a prescription pad — not for pills, but for produce. She enrolled Alaijah in an innovative program for low-income families that makes fresh fruits and vegetables more affordable and more accessible.
The Fruit and Vegetable Prescription Program was created by Wholesome Wave, a nonprofit that makes locally grown produce available to people in low-income neighborhoods, thanks to generous support from Newman’s Own.
After four years in the program, Alaijah’s health has drastically improved. “By the end of the second year, we didn’t have to go to the emergency room. By the end of the third year, she didn’t have to take steroids all year. This is really working,” Browne says.
“Eating more fruits and vegetables has helped me when it comes to concentrating with my classes. It has been a drastic change. I can keep up with my friends now,” Borden says.
“Now she has confidence, and she’s so active. She loves to play with her siblings now. She’s a totally different kid,” says Browne.
For over 30 years, Newman’s Own has helped support thousands of charitable causes and organizations, with close to half a billion dollars being donated since its founding in 1982. Every time you buy a Newman’s Own product, you start a journey toward improving someone’s life — someone like Alaijah Borden and Sheryl Browne.