The Shopping Matters Program, sponsored by the non-profit Share Our Strength and managed by Chef Greg Silverman, is a guided grocery store tour that teaches individuals how to read labels, compare unit prices, and compare various forms of fruits and vegetables. Tours are led by experts in the field, including culinary and health professionals, and challenge participants to buy groceries to make a healthy meal for a family of four with only $10.
Kim Brodie, a health specialist at the College of Natural Sciences at the University of Phoenix-Raleigh has created guidelines for making healthier choices when eating at fast food restaurants. For example, Brodie recommends ordering whole wheat or whole grain bread instead of white bread and ordering plain mustard in place of mayonnaise, ketchup, or barbecue sauce. Learning from this, we can begin to explore how to meet people where they are to help them progress toward healthier eating.
A recent Kaiser Permanente study showed positive behavior change from school interventions by following the Healthy ONES (Healthy Options for Nutrition Environments in Schools) Program for three years. The researchers noted that having a robust plan for stakeholder engagement and having the initiative be community driven were keys to success.
Last month Unity Health Care Upper Cardozo in Washington, DC, began writing prescriptions for $1 per family member per day to be spent at any of five participating District farmers markets. Similar incentive programs are gaining popularity nationally.
With food prices continuing to rise, creating inexpensive meals that are also healthy can be a challenge. Here are tips for creating meals that cost less than $3 per serving.
Medical researcher Ramzi Omri responds to the question “What Are Some Hypothetical, Aggressive Ways To Deal With National Obesity?” Questions were generated by Quora, a question and answer website, and Omri offers some solutions, from banning high fructose corn syrup to consumer education and better food labeling and packaging.
In this video a group of students from the Rhode Island School of Design and Brown University address how to encourage healthier food choices in food deserts using a human-centered design. They discover that the availability of healthy food does not necessarily cause a shift in eating habits; education about how to prepare healthy, inexpensive meals is key, and making it fun is particularly important when trying to engage and educate youth.
A long-term study completed by the Harvard School of Public Health and published by Archives of Internal Medicine finds that eating any amount and any type of red meat significantly increases the risk of premature death. The study examined the eating habits and health of more than 110,000 adults for 20+ years. Substitution of other healthy protein sources, such as nuts, is associated with a lower mortality risk.
Shoppers not only care about cost and proximity to fresh produce, they also want choice and quality. A study of nearly 500 residents in six low-income Chicago neighborhoods showed an increase of approximately twofold in the likelihood of consuming three or more fruits and vegetables daily per consumers’ level of satisfaction of the shopping environment.
In collaboration with Health and Human Services and other food companies, USDA is developing national standards for the sodium content in food. Companies are planning long-term “silent” sodium-reduction plans to give consumers time to adapt their taste buds to less salt in retail foods.
The Los Angeles County Health Department created an online sugar calculator to demonstrate the amount of sugar consumed from sugar-sweetened beverages. Input the quantity of drinks you drink per week and the calculator will determine the amount of sugar you are drinking per week, month, year and over five years as well as the cost.
Food for Thought, a resource from SesameStreet.org, is a bilingual multimedia program designed to help families who have children ages 2 to 8 and lack access to affordable and healthy food. Learn strategies for coping with food insecurity and get tips for teaching children healthy eating habits.