News Releases

Resolutions for a healthier food environment: Take action in 2017

Jan 06, 2017

EDMONTON, AB — For many Canadians, New Year’s resolutions and winter sports will mean lots of time spent in sport and recreation facilities this January. Efforts to be more active are vital to good health, but so is nourishing food. So what healthy options are on offer at your local rink, gym or ski hill? This is the question Dietitians of Canada will ask in 2017 as they encourage Canadians to take action and create healthier food environments in their communities.
 
“Our kids train hard and want to fuel their bodies but all too often what they see in the ski hill cafeteria is sugary drinks and candy,” says Laura MacLean, dietitian and spokesperson for Dietitians of Canada. “Parents can provide healthier choices, like water bottles and snacks from home, but the constant exposure is tough for kids and parents alike.”
 
“Canadians want healthier food environments at sport and recreation facilities,” says Kayla Atkey, policy analyst with the Alberta Policy Coalition for Chronic Disease Prevention. According to a recent survey by University of Alberta researchers, 86% of Alberta respondents would like to see mandated priority space for healthy foods and beverages in recreation facilities and two thirds support restrictions on the sale of sugary drinks and unhealthy foods (58%, 61%). “Despite this, change has been slow across Canada and healthy options are not the norm.”
 
“It’s a myth that healthy food options are unpopular or will be low profit,” says Karen Boyd, dietitian and Regional Executive Director for Dietitians of Canada in Alberta. “There are positive examples popping up across Canada with dietitians providing support to sport facilities and communities, interpreting existing guidelines and recommending healthy and popular alternatives.”
 
“Traditional New Year’s resolutions can have a positive impact on health, and dietitians are standing by to support Canadians,” say MacLean “but think of the impact if every Canadian also made a resolution to change the food environment at their recreation facility in 2017!”
 
New Year’s Resolutions for a Healthier Food Environment:

  • Talk to your sport and rec facility about providing healthy options
  • Support efforts to provide healthy options by ordering them
  • Contact your city councillor and MLA and ask about legislation
  • Support initiatives to restrict marketing of food and beverages to children
  • Support healthy fundraising initiatives like Fresh From the Farm and Farm to School
  • Tweet or share on social media to build awareness
 
About Dietitians of Canada
Dietitians of Canada is the national professional association for dietitians, representing 6,000 members at the local, provincial and national level. As the voice of the profession, Dietitians of Canada strives for excellence in advancing health through food and nutrition.  

Dietitians of Canada supports the access of Canadians to evidence-based food and nutrition information and helps them locate a dietitian for nutrition counselling and nutrition services at dietitians.ca/find.
 
About the APCCP
The APCCP is a coalition of prominent health organizations from across Alberta who have come together to coordinate efforts, generate evidence, and advocate for policy change to reduce chronic disease in Alberta. From 2013-2016, the APCCP was a partner on the  Policy Opportunity Windows – Engaging Research Uptake in Practice (POWER UP!) project. POWER UP! was a team of researchers, practitioners, and policy makers who have come together to gather and share evidence on chronic disease prevention with Canadians – all in one place.
 
For more information on the APCCP, please visit: www.apccp.ca

Additional Information:

For more information, or to arrange an interview, please contact:

Kate Comeau, MSc, RD
Manager of Public Relations and Media
Dietitans of Canada
kate.comeau@dietitians.ca
416-642-9316