Health Champions launch HEALTHY FOOD CHARTER to guide our activities
Through our Cook and Eat projects, training courses and our Café, we want to help everyone to take a positive approach to food, by enjoying healthy meals that are varied and tasty as well as nutritious. We are all unique, we all have different likes and dislikes, different nutritional needs and different social circumstances – and this will all affect what we eat and how we eat. And we can all eat a healthy diet for us – easily and cheaply. That is what we are trying to help people to do.
In order to do this we will encourage everyone to:-
- Eat a wide variety of different foods
- Eat more vegetables (including peas, beans and corn, fresh, frozen and canned and fruit
- Eat less sugar – by reducing sugar (as sugar, honey, syrups and concentrated fruit juices) added to food and possible switch to use of low calorie sweeteners
- Eat less fat, especially saturated fat
- Have a higher fibre intake (through encouraging more wholegrain products and vegetable and fruit intake)
- Limit their salt intake and using other flavourings in food
- Drink plenty of fluid, especially encouraging non-sweetened drinks
- Encourage people to be able to cook meals from “scratch” and gain confidence to be able to do this
- Eat the right amount of food to be a healthy weight
- Encourage the trial of new foods, especially in children.
In practice we do this by:-
Adding vegetables and fruit to meals when we can
- Side salad with your sandwich
- Extra vegetables in a bolognaise or on a pizza
Reducing added sugar
- Lower sugar cakes, such as banana bread
- Sweeteners available as an option
Reducing fat content of meals, which could help you lose weight
- Using only small quantities of added oil and fat in soups, main meals
- Limiting use of butter and margarine
- Using “lite/light” products such as mayonnaise and salad cream
Encourage use of wholegrain cereal products
- Wholemeal bread always available in the café
- Trialling wholegrain pasta, brown rice, wholegrain flour
- Using oats in recipes
Encourage use of herbs and spices in cooking to add flavour to food
Educating people to eat the right portion size of the meal to meet their needs
- Offering small portions of cakes in the café
- Discussion and showing portion size at Cook and Eat groups
Food is More than Nutrition
We also strongly believe that food is more than just nutrition. Food plays a central role in our lives, our families, our economy and our society. We eat on special occasions – birthdays, anniversaries, wedding. We share meals with our family. Food can be important for culture and religion, it can link us to events or people in our past. Food is also more than just taste – the appearance, smell, sound and texture of food are all important to the overall experience a food gives us.
Learning to eat well takes practice. If you want to improve your diet you can.
With these facts in mind we therefore also:-
- Believe that variety really is the ‘spice of life’
- Eating is about balance over a period of time, not about individual good foods and bad foods
- Encourage families (of all varieties) to eat together as much as possible, without distractions of TV, phones, computers. This is a social time to share the highs and lows of our days with those we care about the most
- Want you to try new foods you have not tried before – you never know if could become a new favourite.
Media enquiries: for more information contact Cathy Kelly at firstname.lastname@example.org or on 07704 130226.