Learn more about the impact that integrating local farm fresh foods into school meals can have on children’s health, learning, the local economy and the environment. Check out this data from Farm To School Counts that captures the various benefits of farm to school programs across Oregon!
Look up rates of common chronic diseases like obesity and diabetes in your state and how they’ve changed over the past 25 years. State public health departments are a great place to start searching for this data.
Is there anyone you know that may benefit from one? Let them know about what resources they may be able to receive.
Count the available fruit and vegetable offerings at your corner market, and on menus in the next week. Notice their where they are and how they are highlighted.
If you’re lucky enough to live in an area with a farmers market, get out there and talk to the farmers about their work and buy your fresh produce directly from them. This way they get a larger percentage of the profits, and you get to know the people responsible for growing the food you eat.
How much do you know about the meals your child is served at school? Ask your child and their friends if they like their school meals and what they enjoy or would change about them. Check with the school to see if you can eat lunch with your child one day to see what it’s like for yourself.
Ask friends, family and neighbors whether they have ever received food stamp benefits. It’s estimated that half the U.S. population will receive benefits at one point during their lifetime. Putting a face to the story will help eliminate stigma and misconceptions about SNAP benefits.
Is there a college or university near you? Take a walk one day and see what it’s like. What kinds of restaurants are there? What’s in the vending machines? What kinds of food are available in the student union? Or have a conversation with a child, friend or neighbor attending college about their food choices while on campus. How do you think it compares to college campus from 20 years ago?
Read the 2015 Dietary Guidelines. Look for news articles and commentary related to the guidelines and the advisory committee report on which they are based. Decide for yourself what you think about the guidelines and the process to develop them.
Ever wonder how our food culture got to the point where the easy choice never seems to be the nutritious choice? One day keeps tabs of all the food ads you hear and see. Compare how many are for whole foods and how many are for highly-processed food products.
Do you already work or volunteer with with a group that could incorporate concepts of the Developmental Origins of Health and Disease (DOHaD) into its programs or policies? Do you work in health care, for a community non-profit, in education, or government? These are a few of the more obvious areas where DOHaD principles could be woven into your work. However, social stress and nutrition touch almost every aspect of life.
Explore the blog and follow Better the Future on Twitter and Facebook to begin listening to the conversation.
You might be in awe of the amount and kinds of food this group consumes. But why do they eat what they do? Watch for advertisements that are targeted toward this group. Turn on a TV program or TV station directed toward this group and look at what kinds of products are being advertised and how. Or have a conversation with an adolescent about what they eat.
Print out the plate guide to have on hand next time you shop for food, and try to incorporate as much of it as you are able. Keep it hanging on your fridge as a reminder of what your plate should look like.
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Really look at the food you are eating and think about what it is and where it came from. If it promotes nutrients, are they from actual fruits and vegetables, or are they added chemical compounds? Can you recognize all the ingredients?