University Hospitals develops food-as-medicine model to address food insecurity

The healthy food provided at a new market also serves to combat chronic health conditions.

food as medicine market

Photograph courtesy of University Hospitals

University Hospitals in Cleveland has opened a new Food for Life Market, which will provide healthy food as a means to address chronic health conditions as well as the issue of food insecurity for patients and nearby residents.

University Hospitals will offer patients one week’s worth of food free of charge following a referral from their physician. Patients will also receive the option to meet with University Hospital dietitians who can help them with their dietary needs by encouraging optimal food choices.

Patients are also eligible to receive food assistance once a month for up to six months and can renew that eligibility by meeting again with their physician.

The county in which University Hospitals is located has the highest number of food-insecure residents and children in Ohio. The health systems’ Otis Moss Jr. Health Center, where Food for Life is housed, will hold healthy cooking demonstrations and lessons in meal preparation.

“We will follow the health of these patients over time, and we’ll be able to track their progress on specific diseases, like diabetes and hypertension, by measuring indicators such as hemoglobin A1c and blood pressure,” said Anne Leach, community program director and wellness dietitian for Sodexo Healthcare, in a press release. “We have developed a ‘preventive food as medicine model’ to address food insecurity, which we know if prolonged or repeated, can have negative health consequences.”  

 

More From FoodService Director

Menu Development
fsd culinary council

Michigan Dining’s executive chef, Frank Turchan, and his team prepared many of the meals for attendees during FoodService Director’s second annual Culinary Council Summit, held in early October. The final multicourse dinner took place at Maizie’s Kitchen & Market, a new venue that is part of the Marketplace in the Michigan League, a campus building built in 1929.

The Marketplace, which was carved out of a former study hall, offers hot meal service and a grab-and-go section featuring bento boxes, charcuterie boards and meal kits customers can take home for dinner. There’s also...

Menu Development
fsd culinary council

Avocados are a staple on mainstream menus, yet many foodservice operations limit their use to guacamole, avocado toast, sandwiches and salads. The 12 chefs attending FoodService Director’s Culinary Council Summit, held this fall at University of Michigan, learned how to take avocados into new menu territory through a presentation by sponsor Avocados from Mexico and hands-on kitchen time with its chef, Brian Wilford.

Chef Wilford began with a demo of avo-chicharrons —fried avocado wedges coated with crushed chicharrons or pork rinds. He served these with Mexican crema for dipping,...

Industry News & Opinion

Time Magazine recently named Houston Independent School District (HISD) Officer of Nutrition Services Betti Wiggins one of its 50 most influential people in healthcare .

Wiggins joined HISD in 2017, overseeing the district’s nutrition program, which serves over 280,000 meals daily. During the aftermath of Hurricane Harvey last year, Wiggins helped serve breakfast, lunch and dinner to students and their families and played a role in making meals free for all students for the rest of the school year. Today, the district (the nation's seventh-largest) continues to provide meals to...

Industry News & Opinion

Chartwells K12 has launched a program aimed at offering students more say in their meal options.

Schools participating in the program, called Student Choice, have debuted several new stations, such as Bok Choy, an Asian -themed concept inspired by celebrity chef Jet Tila, and Roost, which is chicken themed.

Each week, chefs serve samples of menu items from the stations to middle and high school students, who then get to vote on which of those items should appear on the menu the following week.

Chefs and dietitians will be on hand during sampling to share more...

FSD Resources

Code for Asynchronous jQuery Munchkin Tracking Code