March is National Nutrition Month and a great time to think about the importance of healthy eating. Nutritious foods nourish your body and give you energy to lead a healthy, active lifestyle. Healthy eating can also help reduce your risk of nutrition-related chronic diseases, like heart disease, type 2 diabetes, and cancer. This is why the Government of Canada is continuing its focus on healthy eating and ensuring Canadians have the tools and information they need to make healthier food choices for themselves and their families.
Nutrition Month was started more than 30 years ago by the Dietitians of Canada. This year's theme focuses on food skills and cooking using the slogan: "Simply cook and enjoy!" to help Canadian families prepare healthier meals, we will be releasing 48 recipes this year with our partner, the Heart and Stroke Foundation. As well, this past month, we ran an Eat Well recipe contest. I encourage you and your family to try all the delicious and nutritious recipes.
As was promised in the Speech from the Throne, the Government of Canada began consulting with parents and consumers in January 2014 on ways to improve nutrition information on food labels by hosting round table discussions across the country and launching an online questionnaire. We'll use the information we receive to develop specific suggestions for change that will be the focus of a future round of consultations.
We have many other great resources on the web to support healthy eating, including:
- Eating Well with Canada's Food Guide, as well as a tailored version for First Nations, Inuit and Métis, which provide Canadians with simple and easy-to-follow nutrition advice. These guides provide advice on how much food you need, what types of foods are better for you, and healthy ways to prepare them.
- The Nutrition Facts table and the % Daily Value , which help you to make healthier food choices for you and your family.
- For more tips and tools on healthy eating.
- Since physical activity complements healthy eating as part of a healthy lifestyle, visit the Public Health Agency of Canada's website for tips on how to get active in your day-to-day life.
In the spirit of National Nutrition Month, I encourage all Canadians to make nutritious choices and to involve children in the preparation of healthy meals.
The Honourable Rona Ambrose
Minister of Health