Grocery Store Tours!

Learn how to eat healthier!

June 26, 2015

Everyone knows that eating healthy foods is the best thing to do for our bodies. Eating the right foods can lower cholesterol, control our blood sugars and make us feel better in general.

Then, we go to the grocery store. We see so many product labels that tell us they are good for us. Are they? What exactly are the right choices?

Penn Highlands Healthcare
is hosting a program that will help participants who have diabetes or are concerned about diabetes learn what the best choices are. 

Spirit Grocery Store Tours will be held throughout July at various stores in the region. They will last one hour and be full of information that participants can use to make noticeable lifestyle changes. The tours are a program developed in collaboration with The Women’s Health Center of Penn Highlands Spirit of Women program and the diabetes educators and dieticians from all four Penn Highlands Hospitals.  

The dates and locations of the tours will be as follows:
9 a.m., Wednesday, July 8, Wal-Mart in DuBois;
9 a.m., Monday, July 13, Shop N Save in DuBois;
9 a.m., Monday, July 20, Mike’s Supermarket in Brookville;
10 a.m., Tuesday, July 21, Wal-Mart in St. Marys;
9 a.m., Thursday, July 23, Wal-Mart in Clearfield;
10 a.m., Tuesday, July 28, Elk County Foods in Ridgway;
9 a.m., Thursday, July 30, Martino’s Bi-Lo in Brockway.

The cost to attend is $10, but participants will receive that same amount back in the form of a gift card for the store. RSVPs are necessary because tour group sizes will be limited.

For those who cannot attend the tours, there will be a program entitled “Eat Your Heart Out” at the Central Resource Center at Penn Highlands DuBois West at 6 p.m., on Wednesday, Aug. 5. This program will mimic the in-store tours but will be classroom based. It will also have a cooking demonstration by culinary school graduate, Amanda Wright of Punxsutawney, and the cost is $5 per person.

“This is an informational program that educates consumers on what products found in a grocery store are healthy versus not healthy,” Alexis Konen of Ridgway said. 

Konan is an intern from Slippery Rock University and Wright is a senior at Indiana University of Pennsylvania. Konen is studying public health and Wright is studying to become a dietitian. Both are working on the Spirit Grocery Store Tours program for the Penn Highlands Healthcare system.

“Participants will learn ways to differentiate between healthy and non-healthy foods,” Wright said. “We will share how to eat healthy without spending more, tips on incorporating healthy options into foods already eaten, how to read food labels and much more.”

For example, looking for clues on the nutrition facts label and ingredient list on bread packaging can help you distinguish whether it contains whole or refined grains and help you to determine which bread is the healthiest option. 

There will also be information on portions and how to fill your plate (and your tummy) with what your body really needs to be healthier. Participants will receive eight-days worth of menus and recipes to help them get started.

The tour will be given by the registered dietitians of Penn Highlands Healthcare. They are
Kelly Schreiber-Straub, registered dietitian, licensed dietitian/nutritionist, certified diabetes educator, or CDE, and Clinical Nutrition manager at Penn Highlands Elk;
Marie Michelini, registered dietitian, licensed dietitian/nutritionist and CDE at PH Elk;
Jeril Goss, registered dietitian, licensed dietitian/nutritionist and CDE and manager of The Diabetes and Nutrition Wellness Center at Penn Highlands DuBois;
Ann Curtis, registered dietitian, licensed dietitian/nutritionist of PH DuBois;
Anna Hummel, registered dietitian, licensed dietitian/nutritionist of Penn Highlands Brookville;
Bernie Clark, registered dietitian, licensed dietitian/nutritionist of Penn Highlands Clearfield.

During the tour, other members of the Penn Highlands team will provide additional education at an information table and do risk assessments for diabetes, Konen said.

Why is Penn Highlands doing this? “With the rising rates of obesity and diabetes in the United States, we wanted a Penn Highlands wide program that raises awareness to the threat of diabetes and to get the information out that is needed to prevent these health issues,” she said.

“Recognizing the risk for chronic health problems such as diabetes and making wise food choices are important step towards building healthy communities and promoting overall wellness,” Lori Rancik, RN and case manager of The Women’s Health Center, said.

To RSVP for a grocery store tour or the Aug. 5 event, call Penn Highlands DuBois at 375-3890.