When you think about where you’re going to go for your next meal, the cafeteria or café at your local hospital may not be the first place that comes to mind. However, there are times when you need to grab a bite at a healthcare facility while visiting loved ones who are receiving care, after a medical appointment or on your meal break. In these cases, did you know that now you can make informed choices about the foods you eat?
The Informed Dining program helps you make informed choices when eating at participating restaurants in British Columbia by giving you access to nutrition information for all standard menu items. Currently, over 2,000 restaurant outlets across BC take part in the program.
Informed Dining is now mandatory at all restaurants, cafeterias and cafes in BC health authority owned or operated health care facilities. From Langley to Vanderhoof and Comox to Castlegar you can find the full list of locations and menu items here. As a result of the program, some restaurants have made changes to the calorie, fat, sugar and/or sodium content of their menu items to provide you with healthier choices. It has also been reported that some operators are looking for suppliers who offer healthier ingredients. Note: This program does not apply to meals and snacks provided to patients or residents.
British Columbians report that they like having nutrition information available in BC funded healthcare facilities; and studies show that across the country people are interested in nutrition information when dining out.
Next time you need to grab a bite at the hospital, use this program to help you make an informed choice, whether you’re looking to increase fibre or reduce your sodium intake. If you have questions about Informed Dining check the website for details or call 8-1-1, toll free, and ask to speak with a HealthLink BC registered dietitian (Monday to Friday, from 9 am to 5 pm).
Have you used the Informed Dining program to help you decide what to order? Tell us more about your experience.