UNION — Less meat and more of a “rainbow” of produce that makes up half of what’s on your plate at each meal of the day is an important part of a healthy lifestyle according to Registered Dietitian Kerri L. Lindberg of the Spartanburg Regional Healthcare System.
Lindberg was in Union Thursday morning as part of the “Nutritional Navigation: A Grocery Store Tour” which involves tours of grocery stores in the Upstate area.
The tour brought Lindberg to the Union Bi-Lo store where she took local residents on a tour of the store, sharing tips on a variety of nutritional subjects including what to look for on a food label, healthy cooking tips, recipes and general advice on shopping for groceries.
“The concept is based on if I met someone who wants to know what to eat, instead of just telling them, why not bring them to the store for an interactive experience,” Lindberg said. “We go to every food aisle in the store and usually there’s two or three items per aisle I focus on.”
The main question Lindberg seeks to address for those taking part in the tour is “what about this product is good for me.”
When you enter the Bi-Lo store, on your right is the produce section which Lindberg says is the best place to find the healthiest food.
“Anything you see in produce is in general good for you,” Lindberg said. “The goal is to have half of the plate at the three meals a day we have filled with produce.
“The other thing I talk about is about eating a ‘rainbow’ a day,” she said. “This refers to all the colors of the produce. Different colors have different levels of vitamins and minerals. If you are getting all of those colors you are getting all those vitamins and minerals.”
While encouraging people to increase their consumption of produce, Lindberg also encourages them to reduce their meat consumption, and not just for health reasons.
“Meat is the most expensive thing we buy,” Lindberg said. “It is the most time-consuming to prepare and it truly has the biggest influence on disease.”
Lindberg pointed out that there are number of risks associated with eating meat, especially red and processed meats including increased of risk heart disease, especially for diabetics, and cancer. She said that meat, especially if there’s a lot of fat, has a lot of calories which contributes to obesity which in turn contributes to health problems such as heart disease, cancer, high blood pressure, and diabetes.
By reducing meat consumption in favor of consuming produce, Lindberg said people can eat meals that are filling but will help them nevertheless lose weight and improve their health.
“Increase produce and you won’t feel hungry while also reducing calories which will lead to a reduction in weight over time,” Lindberg said.
Thursday was the second time Lindberg brought Nutritional Navigation to Union. She said she will bring the tour back to Union on Jan. 28 at 10 a.m. and again lead a tour of the Bi-Lo
Persons who want to participate in the Jan. 28 must register by calling 864-560-4472 or online at spartanburgregional.com.
Spartanburg Regional Healthcare System Registered Dietitian Kerri L. Lindberg stands in the produce section of the Union Bi-Lo store Thursday morning she prepares to lead a tour of the store. Lindberg was in Union as part of “Nutritional Navigation: A Grocery Store Tour” which takes residents of a community on a tour of their local store to provide them with information on a variety of nutritional subjects.
Charles Warner can be reached at 864-762-4090 or [email protected]