Doctors Prescribing Real Food- It’s About Time!

A great piece on NPR’s blog, The Salt, was a breath of fresh air.   “NYC Doctors Are Now Prescribing Fruits And Veggies” is the title of the article that reviews a “new program in New York City has doctors prescribing fruits and vegetables to obese or overweight patients.”

It continues along to describe how “The Fruit and Vegetable Prescription Program  made its debut last Tuesday and aims to give at-risk families greater access to healthy foods. Under the program, obese or overweight patients can be prescribed Health Bucks redeemable for produce at local farmers markets.  Health Bucks are a part of the city’s GrowNYC initiative to make locally grown produce available to low-income New Yorkers. The vouchers are accepted at more than 140 New York City farmers markets.”

This is exactly the type of program we are in desperate need of; addressing both the severe lack of many doctors to address the root cause of many health issues (what patients are putting into their bodies…and I hesitate to call that stuff ‘food’) as well as the upside down system we have in place which makes it easy and cheap to get horrible junk food and difficult and expensive to procure fresh veggies, fruits and naturally raised meats for millions of people in our country living within limited means.

The prescription program was started by Wholesome Wave, a nonprofit that connects low-income people with local, farm fresh foods. In 2011, the group piloted the program at sites in Massachusetts, Maine, California and Rhode Island. It has now expanded to seven states.

Let’s work together to demand this program be implemented in all fifty of our states!   Doctors, nurses, hospital administrators who recognize the value of programs like this: please do your part, too, in making this an integral part of our healthcare system!

There is hope and we can make huge changes if we work together toward the common goal of achieving better health for everyone as our collective goal.