If food label terms like low-fat, gluten-free, whole grain, reduced sugar and no hfcs have you wondering what in the world you should be eating, you’re not alone. According to the nonprofit Center for Science in the Public Interest, the typical American diet is contributing to obesity, diabetes, heart disease and other health problems. Those problems cost Americans more than $150 billion per year. And a third of our children are overweight or obese as well.
Oct. 24 is National Food Day, an annual celebration of real food, as in the kind you buy at the grocery store or farmers market and cook at home. But if you feel like you need a Ph.D to figure out your best bets at the store – scary-sounding alpha-tocopherol, for instance, is just a fancy name for vitamin E – the Columbia Midlands Dietetic Association has you covered.
In honor of Food Day, the organization is leading a series of food tours at Bi-Lo grocery stores around the Midlands. “If we can teach people how to shop, they’ll be able to eat more healthfully, even if they’re on a budget,” says the group’s public relations chair Lindsay Shazly.
Tours last approximately one hour and are based on curriculum from Share Our Strength’s Cooking Matters at the Store program. Participants will learn how to read food labels, compare unit prices, find whole grains, and identify three ways to purchase produce. “People are often surprised to learn that fresh isn’t always the best choice,” says Shazly.
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Tours will be held at Bi-Lo stores at 446 Devine St. and 3900 N. Main St. at 9, 10 and 11 a.m. and noon. Participants receive a $10 BiLo gift card. For more information, visit eatrightsc.org
Find more to do in our new events calendar at events.thestate.com
Katie McElveen, Special to The State