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Take Action on Nutrition Security
The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) last week released Actions on Nutrition Security, a report highlighting the agency’s commitment to ensuring both nutrition security and food security to support optimal health and well-being for all Americans.
You’re probably familiar with the term food security, but what exactly is nutrition security? USDA puts it in simple terms:
Food security is having enough calories.
Nutrition security is having the right calories.
This new initiative is especially timely, given the rising costs of food, gas, and other consumer products. As inflation continues, healthy eating on a budget is becoming more and more of a challenge for the typical American family.
You need to teach your clients, employees, and students that healthy eating on a budget is possible. We have tools to help you do this, starting with our Healthy Shopping on a Budget PowerPoint.
The Healthy Shopping on a Budget presentation provides practical information about low-cost choices in each food group. It also includes a collection of recipes that are inexpensive, easy to prepare, and tasty.
To be most effective, you’ll need to modify the Healthy Shopping on a Budget PowerPoint show to take into account your audience and where they live and work.
This will take a little research on your part. Here are some questions to get you started:
A matching program that stretches SNAP dollars used to purchase fresh produce (ex: Double Up or Produce Perks)?
Is there a full-service supermarket in the area?
If not, do your clients have transportation to a grocery store?
If not, are there nearby corner stores or convenience stores that sell healthy items, like fresh produce, at affordable prices?
Which stores have the best prices on quality fresh produce?
Is there an Aldi nearby?
If so, find out when regulars say is the best day to shop there for fresh produce (hint: it’s usually Wednesdays).
If so, what items should your clients look for at Aldi? (Here’s one list by a registered dietitian).
Where can your clients go when they can’t afford to buy food?
Are there food pantries that offer fresh produce? Salt-free or no-sugar-added canned foods? Whole grains?
Do schools or churches offer free food distribution?
Is there a community garden nearby that allows neighbors to share the harvest?
Do your clients qualify for programs like Meals on Wheels?
Answering these questions are key to being able to educate people about healthy eating on a budget.
You’ll find an infographic that summarizes USDA’s new nutrition security initiative here.
Hollis Bass, MEd, RD, LD