MHLbannersmallBut the one on October 24th
is something special

In only its third year as a national health calendar event, Food Day, celebrated this year on October 24, is gaining more traction in its efforts to support policies on a federal, state and local level that advance healthier diets, promote sustainable, regional agriculture and reduce hunger, while also raising awareness on how our diets can directly contribute to diabetes, obesity and heart

The annual event involves some of the country's most prominent chefs, nutritionists, physicians and healthier foods advocates.This year includes more than 3,000 events and activities across the country ranging from community festivals, concerts and national conferences to food-related film festivals, chef-led recipe samplings and school activities. And while the focus is on healthier eating for everyone, there's a special emphasis on improved school menus from college dining halls to elementary school cafeterias.

One of the hopes expressed by Food Day supporters is to see "shorter lines at fast food drive-thru windows and larger crowds at farmers markets." Although most of our local and regional farmers markets go into hibernation for the colder months, it's a good reminder to be there when they start appearing again next summer and help support local farmers along with your own efforts toward more farm-to-table eating.

EatRealEat Real

One of the other aims of Food Day is to help all us be more aware of "eating real." According to healthier food advocates, that means cutting back on sugar-laden drinks and heavily salted and fatty packaged and prepared foods in favor of more vegetables, fruits and whole grains. At a time when the typical American diet is practically a health hazard on some levels, moving toward "real" unprocessed food is a public health necessity as well as a personal choice.

The whole point of Food Day is that it's a good reminder to congratulate yourself on – or to start – eating a healthier diet as part of an overall better system of food supply and demand. So let one day be a good motivator to eating healthier yourself and putting your family's diet on a healthier course for the 364 days that follow.