Eating index

A local newspaper, The Journal-Gazette, recently ran an article about how our region eats. On a Gallup-Sharecare Well-Being Index, our metro area ranked in the bottom fifth of (perhaps) comparable communities.

This is not a study by any stretch of the imagination. There is no science to the results. It represents people willing to answer questions on the phone. It asks people to self-report eating habits. So, I doubt the “results” reflect much of anything but the author immediately jumps to a solution: eliminate food deserts.

Wow, if that “solution” would have any impact, we have solved all health issues connected to diet. Build grocery stores and farmer’s markets on every corner. And they will come.

Despite the evidence that Americans leave their “deserts” routinely and despite the evidence that having healthy food available does NOT lead to healthier choices, we continue down that well-meaning path. The problem with the misdirection is that we’re wasting resources.

Thankfully, the article quoted Julie West, a DuPont Hospital Registered Dietitian Nutritionist, saying PLANNING is a key factor in healthy food habits. No one plans an unhealthy trip to the store. No one plans to eat a candy bar for lunch. No one plans to eat fast food every day. Those habits reflect lack of planning.

Our resources would be better spent, helping consumers, of every age, make a plan. As we speed up every aspect of our lives, thinking, reflecting and planning is left behind. As un-glamorous as it sounds, thinking through a week of eating (or even the next three days) and planning where and what your meals will be, gives you your first step toward better choices.

How would you answer the question: Did you eat healthy all day yesterday? PLAN to be well,




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