The Canadian Food Guide Essay

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The Canadian Food Guide1 is an important health promotion tool, as long as it is adapted to the sociocultural context in which it is used. This is crucial for the First Nations, which are struggling with health problems related to nutrition and whose traditional eating habits must be taken into account2. Drawing deeply into their values and culture, Atikamekw health services have developed their own Food Guide (AFG) in 1998. For ten years, it was the main tool used by health workers to teach basic principles of healthy eating.

The 2007 publication of the latest Canada's Food Guide, with recommendations for healthy eating based on scientific evidence, including a customized version for First Nations, Inuit and Metis (CFGFNIM)1, revealed numerous gaps in the AFG in terms of new nutritional standards. In consultation with an advisory committee, a notice was issued on the preferred tool. Unanimously, the Atikamekw wanted to keep the AFG as a reference tool for their community while supporting its update. This preference for the GAA is due to the strong sense of cultural...

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