Clean your plate of those fruits and veggies in September
What: September is a time for a new season, a new school year and new friends. It can also be a good time to recommit to old resolutions, such as eating better and exercising more. In September, get healthier by eating better during Fruits and Veggies – More Matters Month.
Background: Sponsored by the Produce for Better Health (PBH) Foundation in partnership with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Fruits and Veggies – More Matters Month was created to encourage Americans to eat more fruits and vegetables. According to PBH, more than 90 percent of Americans are consuming less than the daily recommended amount, which is two to six-and-a-half cups. Having a healthy, balanced diet is important for everyone, so when the school year begins and life gets more hectic, it’s important to remember your health.
Story Pitch: A wide variety of groups and organizations can participate in Fruits and Veggies – More Matters Month. Pediatricians and family doctors may discuss the importance of a healthy and balanced diet with parents. Area farmers can promote buying local this month, and may want to educate consumers on what fruits and veggies are in season. Cafeterias and lunch rooms will want to offer fresh, in-season fruit and veggie choices to patrons, stressing the importance of a well-balanced, produce-filled diet. Grocers can also advertise produce selections, while restaurants will want to run specials on meals containing plenty of veggies.
Story Hook: According to the Centers for Disease Control, healthy eating can reduce the risk of heart disease, cancer, stroke and diabetes. Consider the following when you make your pitch:
- What fruits and vegetables are in season in September and early fall?
- In what ways can parents and caregivers encourage children to eat plenty of fruits and veggies?
- How can parents and caregivers sneak in extra servings of fruits and veggies for the picky eater?
- How can adults, who have already formed certain habits, adapt their diets to include the necessary servings of fruits and veggies?
Tips: A dietician who specializes in healthy eating can advise parents and children on how to get full servings of fruits and vegetables every day. In addition, local produce farmers can discuss seasonal offerings and how to select the best and freshest.
Centers for Disease Control
Food and Nutrition Information Center
Fruits and Veggies – More Matters
U.S. Department of Health and Human Services
–Researched, compiled & written by Kimberly Cooper
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