Several initiatives exist at Spokane Regional Health District to improve
access to healthy foods, support healthy child development, and reduce chronic
disease in Spokane County. This work is important as food programs that focus on
people with the greatest nutrition needs are often underfunded and understaffed.
The program is funded with grants from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and
Prevention and Washington State Department of Health. Staff work
with outside agencies like the Child Adult Care Food Program, Spokane Public
Schools, Senior Meals on Wheels and the food industry (food manufacturing, distribution, brokers) to carry out its mission to increase
access to healthy foods and beverages for all.
In many communities across the country, people walk out their front doors and see nothing but fast food and convenience stores selling high-fat, high-sugar processed foods. Residents of rural areas sometimes face a complete lack of nearby food options at all. Meanwhile, obesity is increasing at an alarming rate.
Despite these social, cultural and physical environments conspiring against individuals, it is important that these factors are balanced with personal responsibility.
There are several things an individual can do to increase their own access,
and the community's access, to healthier foods. From understanding "what" real food is, to learning how to cook and shop for it, this page offers a number of
resources for individuals to stand together for what is good for all.
Community environments affect people’s eating and exercise habits, which most everyone can agree are key contributors to obesity.
Lowering obesity rates, through increased access to healthy foods, requires a comprehensive approach, including programs to address the choices available in the communities where people live.
The good news is that change is possible—communities across the country are overcoming the “food gap,” with strategies and opportunities like supporting regional farms, buying local and gleaning.
Across the country, there are a growing number of innovative policies that are changing the food access environment, providing communities with access to affordable healthy foods. By improving the quality and selection of food offered in stores and linking farmers directly to consumers, these efforts are increasing access to healthy foods, contributing to reduced rates of obesity and diabetes, creating jobs, increasing profits, and revitalizing distressed neighborhoods.
Several organizations locally offer individuals a chance to get involved in developing policies that can help shape the environment of the food system in Spokane moving forward.
It seems like every day brings news of what you should or shouldn't eat. But fear not! It's all boiled down into one easy-to-understand graphic on the USDA's Choose MyPlate website. It's designed to help everyone make healthy foods choices and be healthy every day.
The next time you prepare a meal, just divide your plate into four equal parts made up of vegetables, fruits, proteins, and grains. That's all you need to do to ensure that you're eating a well-balanced meal.
The Choose MyPlate website is full of great information, including tips for healthy eating on a budget, sample menus and recipes, and weight management information. They also have tips for how to increase your physical activity.
So the next time you're wondering what a healthy meal looks like, visit Choose MyPlate, eat and enjoy!
The My Healthy Life campaign is designed to support those in Spokane who are eligible for Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) benefits, formerly known as food stamps, in reaching their individual goals to get healthier. We know the barriers you face when it comes to eating more fruits and veggies, getting more physical activity and drinking lower-fat milk and we have the simple tips and tricks you need to overcome those obstacles.
Eat Healthy Your Way has more information on enjoying healthy food that tastes great, complete with recipes! Making Healthy Eating part of Your Total Lifestyle is another governmental resource for more tips for making healthy eating.
100 Days of Real Food gives lots of practical advice (and recipes!) for eating with real food.
“Eating a diet high in fruits and vegetables associated with decreased risk of many chronic diseases. ”
According to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention eating a diet high in fruits and vegetables is associated with a decreased risk of many chronic diseases, including heart disease, stroke, high blood pressure, diabetes, and some cancers.