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Healthy Native Food Choices

Healthy Native Food Choices

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Healthy Native Food Choices

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  1. Healthy Native Food Choices Cheri L. Nemec, RD, CD Great Lakes Inter-Tribal Council, Inc. Family Nutrition Program

  2. Traditional Diets • Superior health from Mother Earth • Nature’s Supermarket • Rich in lean protein, fiber, whole grains, fresh produce • Water and teas • Gathering/Hunting (social aspects/physical activities) • Agriculture or nomadic • Diabetes was absent and diabetes rare

  3. Modern Diet • Rich in processed foods, little fresh produce, high amount of fats • No balance • Not enough fruits and vegetables • Sweetened drinks • Fast foods • Trans-fats • Few choices mostly purchased foods • Canned foods • Higher amounts of grains and starches • Led to diabetes and other complications

  4. Cooking Methods • Traditional methods: boiling (stone boiling), steaming, broiling • Grow and gather foods • Drying, freezing or smoking • Modern: Fry, deep fry, baking, microwaving • Fast foods, convenience foods, little gardening, little gathering • Hunting

  5. NATIVE FOOD CIRCLE: CHOICES FOR A HEALTHY LIFESTYLE Breastmilk for babies

  6. Meat/Protein • Hunting • Fishing • Salmon, bear, moose, deer, antelope, elk, rabbit, buffalo, mountain sheep • Nuts/Seeds

  7. Grains • Corn/Maize • Wild rice • Acorn • Flours

  8. Fruits • Gathering • Berries: raspberries, strawberries, huckleberry, cranberries, chokecherries • Dried • Fruit leathers

  9. Vegetables • Agriculture • Corn • Beans • Squash • Pumpkin • Flowers and other greens • Food is Medicine

  10. Beverages and Seasonings • Flavorful drinks • Medicinal teas • Fruits • Maple syrup/sugar • Roots, stems, leaves, flowers

  11. Indian pudding Pumpkins Squash Wild rice Traditional breads Beans Cranberries Other berries Corn based foods Hominy Soups Traditional Foods in Elder Meals

  12. Substitution Ideas • Berries with meats • Pumpkin based • Fresh vegetables • Natural seasonings • Lean meats • Water!

  13. Low Fat and Low Sugar Ideas • Use natural flavorings of fruits • Use whole grains • Modify recipes • Offer beans regularly for protein • No added fats • Use traditional cooking methods

  14. Building a Healthier Plate • Lean meats • Lean cuts of beef and pork, chicken, turkey, buffalo when available, fish, nuts • Fresh Produce • Whole grains • Water • In a balanced meal, no food dominates the plate

  15. Discussion • What are some tribal specific recipies you could use? • Any modifications for a healthier choice? • Fry Bread?