My three daughters are now young adults living away from home so the food-related role of being a mom has undergone many subtle changes over the years. When they were small it was “all mom, all the time” when it came to feeding them. Today, of course, they still rely on me for guidance but for the most part they are on their own to forage for food, prepare it and eat on a day to day basis.
I’m lucky, though, my children were all born and raised in Maine and shopped at Hannaford Supermarkets throughout their childhood. My younger daughters were around to see the start of Guiding Stars at Hannaford in 2006. Being a Registered Dietitian has certainly had a strong influence on their eating habits, but so has the availability of an easy to follow nutrition guidance program using one, two, or three stars. And Guiding Stars was there to help guide them towards quality nutrition choices as they started to shop on their own.
Now that my daughters have left the nest, they shop in other locales that don’t carry the stars. As a mom, one of the ways that I enjoy supporting my daughters is to food shop with them when I visit. I think their shopping list certainly gets longer and longer in anticipation of my arrival! A fun consequence of shopping with my daughters is becoming familiar with the variety of supermarkets where they live from Morningside Heights and Park Slope in New York City to the Fenway and Mission Hill areas of Boston. Many favorite items from home can’t be found in these stores but this opportunity together gives us a chance to explore many new and wonderful items.
Of course, having the stars’ guidance on shelf tags, on in-store signs, and on packaging on private label brands in the grocery store setting provides the ultimate ease and convenience while shopping with nutrition in mind. However there’s another option now. The Food Finder! It is as easy as using your smartphone to go online and make your shopping list by using the Food Finder. You can search for foods and beverages by one, two, or three stars. Or you can just type in a food name or browse through the many categories and you’ll quickly discover that simplicity in-store translates to simplicity online. My girls may be all grown up and shopping on their own but as a mom I know I have given them the best tools and guidance possible to navigate making nutritious food choices. Try out the Food Finder with your children! No matter where you or your family shops, the Food Finder program points you in the right direction to shop with the stars!
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About our Nutrition Expert
Lori Kaley MS, RD, LD, MSB is a member of the Guiding Stars Scientific Advisory Panel. Lori has 30 years of combined experience working in healthcare and public health creating policies and environments to help families and children have access to healthy foods and beverages. She is currently Policy Associate at the University of Southern Maine’s Muskie School of Public Service.
Lori’s greatest achievement and joy has been in raising her three daughters to be healthy and productive young adults, each with their own particular love of food, cooking and being physically active. Lori’s passion for nutritional community outreach has been a cornerstone of the Guiding Stars Scientific Advisory Panel. Lori regularly contributes to the Guiding Stars blog.