Keep low-calorie foods close to choose them more often

March 20, 2014, Reuters

By Shereen Jegtvig

In a new study suggesting laziness could be tapped as a tool for healthier eating, people reached for low-calorie apple slices more often than buttery popcorn when the apples were within easier reach.

“There are the little things that we can do to just make our diets healthier, and one of them is the simple idea to just put the healthy foods closer to you and you’ll find you can use your laziness to your advantage,” Gregory Privitera told Reuters Health.

Privitera, a psychology researcher at Saint Bonaventure University in Bonaventure, New York, led the study, which he says was inspired by experience with his kids. Continue reading

Focus on health, not fat, in food talks with kids

June 24, 2013, HealthDay

By Denise Mann

There’s a right way and a wrong way to persuade your adolescent to eat healthy and help avoid obesity, a new study suggests.

Pointedly connecting food with fatness or talking about needed weight loss is the wrong way and could even encourage unhealthy eating habits, researchers report.

Instead, discussions that focus on simply eating healthfully are less likely to send kids down this road, a new study shows.

“A lot of parents are aware of the obesity problem in the United States — it’s everywhere you turn — but they wonder how to talk about it with their children,” said study lead author Dr. Jerica Berge of the University of Minnesota Medical School in Minneapolis. Continue reading

Calorie cutback: Progress report on 2010 commitment to reduce calories in the marketplace

On May 30, the Bipartisan Policy Center (BPC) and the Healthy Weight Commitment Foundation held a webcast to review the progress of companies offering healthier options to consumers.

At a White House event in May 2010, 16 food and beverage companies stepped forward and made a commitment to reduce calories in the marketplace by 1.5 trillion by 2015, with an interim goal of a one trillion reduction by the end of 2012. This was an early commitment made to the Partnership for a Healthier America, a nonprofit founded in 2010 that is led by some of the nation’s most respected health and childhood obesity advocates. First lady Michelle Obama is an honorary chair of the organization. Continue reading

Are healthy foods really more expensive? It depends on how you measure the price

Most Americans do not eat enough fruits, vegetables, and whole grains to meet federal dietary recommendations. A commonly cited reason for this deficiency is that healthy foods cost more than less healthy options. However, a recent study from the U.S. Department of Agriculture found that nutritious foods – such as grains, vegetables, fruit, and dairy – typically cost less than items high in saturated fat and added sugars. Continue reading