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ND Capitol Adopts New Healthy-Eating Program

Health experts are testing a new healthy eating program at the North Dakota State Capitol this summer. (iStockphoto)
Health experts are testing a new healthy eating program at the North Dakota State Capitol this summer. (iStockphoto)
June 20, 2016

BISMARCK, N.D. – Health experts in North Dakota this summer are bringing a heart healthy food program to the busy State Capitol.

The American Heart Association is working with the state Health Department on a pilot program to make healthy eating an easier choice.

Research shows most Americans want to eat healthier, but they often don't have a lot of options, especially at work.

State Health Officer Dr. Terry Dwelle says to help change that, new, fresh food and drink options will be available at the Capitol Cafe, where state legislators, state employees and visitors come to eat.

"Offering healthy foods to individuals in the worksite, I think hopefully will help influence their decisions for healthier living in general, regarding nutrition," he states.

Dwelle says if more employers offer more healthful food options in the workplace, employees may start making more health conscious choices at home as well. That, in turn, could end up saving companies millions of dollars in health related productivity losses.

As part of the healthy eating program, the cafe has added fresh fruit, salads and sugar free drinks to its menu.

Dwelle is hoping the new choices could eventually influence healthier state policies and personal decisions.

"Our legislative colleagues that are here, but also all of us that are employees here, it hopefully sends a message that this is an example that maybe you should consider in your own life," he states.

According to the American Heart Association, obesity costs U.S. businesses more than $12 billion a year in medical expenses.

Dwelle is convinced those costs could plummet if more workplaces adopted a similar healthy eating program.


Brandon Campbell, Public News Service - ND