August 28th

theresa albert - my friend in food


Star Program on CBC, the National


There is no doubt in my mind that we need some kind of system to guide better choices at the grocery store.  The Health Check System isn’t rigorous enough, any store brand system is merely marketing and Health Canada doesn’t seem to be moving  fast or far enough to implement change. That leaves you and me baffled in the grocery aisle with our calculators and conundrums.

Loblaws is rolling out a new star rating system in Ontario that I have had my eye on for some time.  It is a US based system that goes much further than any so far. This system has been studied and tested independently (by the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition) so we do know that it creates an improvement in choices.  My only concern is that bringing on another system will muddy the waters further. What we need is the adoption of a system like this from coast, to coast to coast that is trustworthy, rigorous and dependable.

Here are the pros and cons of this new system:


  • Independent, third party assessment and weighting  of vitamins, minerals, fiber, whole grains versus fats,cholesterol, sugar and sodium
  • Compares packaged products to similar products to make decisions easier
  • Assesses the entire grocery store (fruits, veggies and lean proteins get 3 stars! Go figure)


  • Only available in Ontario
  • You may be too skeptical or exhausted to try/trust
  • You still need to be aware of the ingredient list and be sure you understand each item
  • You can still overeat a 3 star food, portions are in your hands


Here is my discussion with Ian Hanomansing on CBC National…


Theresa Albert

Theresa Albert

I love food, try to watch my weight, know more than I want to about healthy living (sometimes I wish I knew less so I wouldn’t feel so guilty when I stumble), am a daughter, sister, friend, mom and wife who worries and scurries the meals onto the table. It is for all these reasons that I completed my nutrition, RNCP designation, wrote my book, hosted my Food Network show, consult with food companies to urge them to get it right (or at least better), constantly write about it, research it, all of this so I can cut through the nutrition and food “news” clutter. Happy to share with friends!


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