Message from the Minister of Health – Nutrition Month

by ahnationtalk on March 1, 2018305 Views

When it comes to our health, some of our most important daily decisions are simply what we choose to eat.

March is Nutrition Month — a great time to discover how food can improve physical and emotional well-being. This year’s theme is Unlock the Potential of Food. The campaign, led by Dietitians of Canada, highlights how food nourishes and fuels active lives, helps heal, prevents chronic diseases, and brings people together.

In today’s busy world, we are all pressed for time, working long hours and racing with our families from one commitment to the next. With less time to cook and shop, it’s no wonder that we don’t always make the best decisions when buying food. Maintaining a healthy diet is just one more challenge on a long to-do list.

Despite this, Canadians want to eat well. And the Government of Canada is working to help us all make healthier choices.

In the year and a half since Health Canada launched its Healthy Eating Strategy, we have made significant progress in making the healthier choice the easier choice for all Canadians. We have finalized changes to make nutrition labelling easier to read and understand. We have also taken the final step to ban the main source of industrially produced trans fats in all food sold in Canada.

Another key element that was launched this past February is a proposal for front-of-package symbols that will quickly and easily let consumers know if a food is high in saturated fat, sugars or sodium. These changes will make it easier for all Canadians, especially those who are limited by time or nutritional knowledge, to compare similar products and make healthier choices. Your feedback is important. I would encourage you to take part in these consultations and tell us which symbol would be most helpful to you in making better food choices.

We are also updating Canada’s Food Guide to make it more relevant and useful to Canadians, and supporting legislation to restrict the marketing of unhealthy foods and beverages to children, to help our kids get the best start in developing healthy eating habits from a young age.

Moreover, for many people living in the North — including many Indigenous families — access to affordable, nutritious food can often be a challenge. That is why the government of Canada is also committed to improving the Nutrition North Canada (NNC) program to reflect Northerners’ needs and to increase knowledge of healthy eating and skills to help select and prepare healthy foods through activities such as cooking classes and in-store food demonstrations.

This month, I encourage all Canadians to learn more about healthy eating and to incorporate healthy food into their daily lives. So try a new vegetable, share a healthy recipe with family and friends, or slip an extra piece of fruit into your lunch bag. It’s the little choices that can make a big difference on the road to a healthier lifestyle!

The Honourable Ginette Petitpas Taylor
Minister of Health


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