By Robin Allen MSPH, RDN, LDN
If you missed the free webinar “High Impact Grocery Store Tours” presented by Maribel Alchin MBA, RD, LDN, you can view the recording here. Below are some key points from the presenter and the participants:
Tips for conducting grocery store tours:
- Avoid the shop perimeter trap. There are healthy foods in the center isles, such as whole grains, legumes, and lower sodium products.
- Smaller groups are better: try for about 10 people.
- Send reminders 3-7 days prior.
- Know your audience!
- Try an activity challenge, such as how many fruits and vegetables can you name that begin with the letter K?
- Use shopping cart for valuables. Also, seniors often cannot walk or stand for 60 to 90 minutes, so using a cart to lean on helps them.
- Provide handouts with meal planning resources and/or recipes.
- Keep the message positive! Avoid negative or derogatory statements.
Use your local Commissary Nutrition Guide Program (NGP)
Developed by Dietitians and Dietitian Approved! NGP is a point of sale information system that calls out key nutrient attributes of store products. NPD uses color-coded shelf tags to highlight the nutrition attributes of low sodium, low fat, whole grain, no added sugar and a great source of fiber. Defense Commissary Agency (DeCA) worked in collaboration with key DoD agency and service branch health and wellness personnel to align the NPG program as closely as possible “Go for Green” and the Marine Corp “Fueled to Fight”.
Go For Green (G4G)
Go For Green (G4G) is an all-service, DoD performance-nutrition initiative that seeks to improve the Service Members environment by offering better food and beverage selection where they live and work. The Go for Green® symbol can help service members and their family make healthier food choices. Items that meet high nutrition quality/high-performance foods in Go for Green will have a “Thumbs Up” icon displayed on the NGP label.
Fueled to Fight
The Marine Corp nutrition education program Fueled to Fight uses a stop light system for product identification to enhance the Marine’s ability to make healthier choices. It establishes a policy for color coding the menu within the USMC mess hall. Foods are categorized by red, yellow and green based on fat and saturated fat percent.
Green – “Engage at Will” – Great choices
Yellow – “Well aimed shots” – Use occasionally
Red – “Check fire” – Limit amounts
Facts Up Front
Facts Up Front labels display how many calories and how much saturated fat, sodium and sugar is in each serving. Facts Up Front is a voluntary initiative led by the Grocery Manufacturers Association, which represents the nation’s leading food and beverage companies, and the Food Marketing Institute, which represents more than 1,500 food wholesalers and retailers. The facts are grounded in consensus nutrition science and are straight from the Nutrition Facts Panel.
The Mushroom Council provides information on mushrooms plus recipes for a healthier hamburger mix, anywhere from 30% mushrooms to 100% mushrooms. See the Better For You Blend and the Blend Scale infographic.
The RD Toolkit provides helpful tools for the Registered Dietitian to improve patient care and outcomes.
Oldways explores traditional diets such as the Mediterranean diet, African Heritage Diet, Latin American diet, Asian Diet and the Vegetarian and Vegan Diet. The main mission is to preserving and promoting traditional foods in ways that are good for people and good for the planet.
The USDA, Choose MyPlate.gov has a section for Nutrition Communicators