Guide Healthy Eating Through Informed Choice

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Consider tapping into some of these resources and tips for healthy solutions. Andrea Munson visited a nutritionist at the Duke Center for Integrative Medicine and changed more than just her diet.

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The one-hour discussion with a registered dietitian focuses on ways to incorporate healthy eating into daily life. In addition, Duke's health plans cover six nutrition visits each year to clinics such as the Duke Center for Integrative Medicine or the Duke Health and Fitness Center.

Cathy Dillehay, a medical assistant at Duke, picks up tactics for healthy eating by attending free monthly seminars sponsored by DukeWell, Duke's disease management program. In the past year, she learned about mindfulness practices to change eating habits, tasted fresh produce at a seminar on eating local foods and collected tips for healthy holiday eating. To increase fresh, local produce in your diet, consider attending the Duke Farmers Market during the summer or joining Duke's Mobile Farmers Market , which operates year-round. Visit the website for the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics, sponsors of National Nutrition Month, for tip sheets on healthy snacks with calories or less.

Dietitians recommend filling half of a plate with fruits and vegetables. Duke's resources can help combat misinformation and change eating habits, which in turn leads to a happier, healthy life, she said.

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They are the ones who really taste what they are eating. They are different from sugars found in whole foods such as fruit and vegetables. It is not for nothing that the food industry invests so much in developing and refining its packaging. The information mandated by government — such as the Nutrition Facts table, what it includes and where it must be placed — directly impacts what we buy and what we eat.

People's Information Network | Healthy Eating Awards - Making Healthy Food Choices Easy

The current proposals for prominent and clear labeling to identify products high in saturated fat, salt or sugar would allow Canadians to more easily make informed choices. The long-term impact of these policies is what makes the process used by Ottawa for these important changes so vital. A group of 26 of the most prominent world nutrition experts recently sent a letter to Health Canada stressing that the science is clear that excess consumption of foods and beverages high in energy, added sugar, sodium and saturated fat has a negative health impact.

This knowledgeable group says front-of-package warning labels are a good way to curb consumption of unhealthy products, most of which are processed foods.

Almost one-in-three children are overweight or obesity. Critics of the proposed policies use scare tactics claiming the goal of the changes is to force food choices on Canadians and to hurt Canadian agriculture. The goal, of course, is to inform choices, not restrict them.

Agriculture has a crucial role in supplying many nutritious foods we all need. That will never change. What does need to change is our steady march as a society toward obesity and diet-related sickness.

How to Make Informed Food Choices

She is also an advisor to the World Health Organization and is an expert advisor with EvidenceNetwork. Is there more to this story? We encourage all readers to share their views on our articles and blog posts.