Metropolitan Methodist Hospital Partners with National and Local Efforts to Promote Healthy Food Choices

Metropolitan Methodist Hospital is proud to partner with the National program Healthy Food in Healthcare (www.healthyfoodinhealthcare.org). Through the Healthy Food in Healthcare movement, a number of hospitals across the state and nation have transformed their food purchasing and food serving practices in recognition of their power to promote health. As such, they have sought to write food service policies and adopt practices which:

Image• Emphasize nutritional value and promote heart‐healthy, calorie‐conscious, and other disease‐preventing food choices

• Support local businesses and producers

• Reward sustainable food production practices, such as organic growing, which minimize public health risks such as antibiotic resistance

As places of healing, hospitals have a visible incentive to provide food that’s healthy for people and for the environment in which we live. Food can be supplied in a variety of ways, which have consequences in terms of nutrition, disease risk, public health, environmental health, and social and economic well‐being. With attention to the way food is grown, to the ways it is packaged, shipped, prepared, and discarded, hospitals’ food purchasing decisions and food service practices can play important roles in promoting healthy lifestyles and choices, preventing chronic disease, and contributing to ecological health.

Metropolitan Methodist Hospital will also be partnering with the local San Antonio movement Por Vida, a program through the Healthy Restaurant Coalition in San Antonio. In January 2009, the San Antonio Metropolitan Health District, San Antonio Restaurant Association (SARA), and the San Antonio Dietetic Association (SADA) joined forces to develop the Healthy Restaurants Coalition (HRC), a partnership of local organizations and individuals interested in promoting healthy food choices in restaurants and good nutrition within the community (www.sanantonio.gov/health/PorVida).

¡Por Vida! is a restaurant recognition program that helps adults and children make healthier food choices by identifying those menu items that meet nutritional guidelines developed by the Healthy Restaurants Coalition.

Next time you are in the Metropolitan Methodist Hospital cafeteria, choose a “¡Por Vida!” option; you will make a better choice “For Life”!

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