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Sustainable Foods

In our role as promoters of health and wellness, it is crucial for nurses to understand the role that healthy, local, and sustainable foods play in optimizing the health of our patients, families, and communities.   Here are some resources to help you promote healthy and sustainable eating.

Toxics in our food

Health/toxics: our food  Our food and its packaging can contain not only pesticides, but mercury, lead, and industrial chemicals.

Fish facts for health professionals  Nurses are often asked by the patients and families about the benefits and health risks of fish consumption.  Conflicting media messages coupled with limited health professional training about risks and benefits of fish consumption has led to confusion by health professionals on what to recommend.  Clear up the confusion with this great resource.

rBGH: What you can do  Recombinant Bovine Growth Hormone (rBGH), is a genetically-engineered growth hormone that is injected into cows to increase their milk production. Use of rBGH increases disease rates in cows and creates the potential for human health risks. Nurses have an opportunity to help eliminate this practice by encouraging their hospitals to purchase dairy products from companies that do not use rBGH.   Use this rBGH Toolkit to take action.

BPA in kids’ canned food  Product testing by the Breast Cancer Fund has uncovered bisphenol A, the estrogenic chemical linked to breast cancer in lab studies, in canned foods marketed directly to children.  Learn about the dangers of BPA in food and find safer canned food choices.

Healthy food in health care

Health Care Without Harm’s web resource includes key food issues, the Healthy Food Pledge, food purchasing policies and guidelines, balanced menus, and how to reduce the use of antibiotics in food.

Find local food near you

Local Dirt  Find and buy fresh local food directly from family farms.

Local Harvest   Find farmers’ markets, family farms and CSAs in your area.