New Model Helps One County Become "Heart-Healthy."

Article excerpt

David Pelletier's new monitoring model has turned traditional nutrition monitoring on its ear. Rather than collect data indiscriminately and then distribute it to policymakers and other audiences, researchers now first determine what problems need to be addressed and then gear their efforts toward solving those problems.

In Wyoming County, a coalition of health educators, health professionals, and community residents adopted this approach to focus on what they see as a problem in their county - heart disease. They want to determine what can be done to help the county's residents improve their access to "heart-healthy" food. Their target? Area supermarkets.

"Like in a lot of other counties, heart disease is a big problem here in Wyoming County," says Cornell Cooperative Extension educator Rosemary Walkley, who chairs the task force directing the project. "We want to increase the amount of healthful food that people can select from when they go shopping."

Their effort is the next step in the Community-Based Nutrition Monitoring Project and the first to use Pelletier's revised monitoring model. In the initial part of the project, traditional monitoring strategies had been used to collect data on the nutrition services that are available in the county. …

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