Brenden Parker is a first year student in the nutrition program at South Maine Community College in South Portland, Maine. He also works in the Buxton, Maine Hannaford. As part of a class assignment, Brenden asked to visit with the Guiding Stars Licensing Company to learn more about the Guiding Stars program. We asked Brenden to share some of his thoughts for our blog.
We live in a world where obesity rates are at an extreme high. It seems that more than ever people are beginning to explore nutrition in efforts to live a healthier lifestyle. I personally spent my high school years pushing 300 pounds and was lost on how to lose the weight. I knew running was a way to drop that weight, but it was also an activity I despised and would constantly put it off. I had the luxury of working with a personal trainer; through my experience with him I was able to learn simple nutrition tips and ways to incorporate good nutrition into my weight loss plan.
Needless to say, it wasn’t long before I became a believer in using nutrition and proper eating habits to lose weight. Before I met my trainer I can admit I was lost. I didn’t know where to begin even with nutrition. There’s a lot of false information and fad diets that lead you away from your ultimate goal. I’ve recently been able to work alongside the Guiding Stars team and develop a strong understanding of the program and how it works. Although I’m only a student at the end of my first semester with no expertise in the field of nutrition, I whole heartedly believe that if I had utilized Guiding Stars at an earlier stage in my life there would’ve been no need to spend money on a personal trainer.
Guiding Stars is an incredible resource especially for those who lack knowledge and have no idea where to begin. Guiding Stars is a complex system composed of four separate algorithms that determine which products have stronger nutritional values. Products receive credits and debits in a point system that allows the team to put a rating on the product. Many products don’t receive stars, while others receive 1 star for good nutrition, 2 stars for better nutrition and 3 stars for the most nutritional value. Guiding Stars also works with a number of expert nutrition and public health advocates, including numerous Registered Dietitians establishing a strong sense of credibility for the program. Developing an understanding of the Guiding Stars program can possibly eliminate the need for personal trainers and getting hooked on fad diets. It provides consumers a platform to break into nutrition in a personalized way.
The Guiding Stars team does the research. They decide the rating of each product, and ultimately do all the heavy lifting for the general public. All the consumer needs to do is go grocery shopping and look for the Guiding Stars tags on the shelf. I truly believe Guiding Stars may be the best nutritional resource available to the consumer. I look forward to taking what I’ve learned at Guiding Stars and not only put it to use myself, but also look to help my colleagues and shoppers in the store.