Health Starts Here

What is Health Starts Here?

Whole Foods Market recognizes the alarming rates of obesity and chronic disease in America, and is addressing the issue by providing information and support to those who want to embark on a journey to a healthier lifestyle. We’re deepening our commitment to healthy eating through our new initiative, Health Starts Here, an education program based on simple criteria for everyday eating, no matter what dietary path you follow. With Health Starts Here, our customers can take charge, eat well and feel great! When we opened our first Whole Foods Market store in 1980, our primary mission was to provide natural foods as a delicious and healthy alternative to increasing amounts of highly processed foods and artificial ingredients. Our new core value – “Promoting the health of our stakeholders through healthy eating education” – is a reminder of our roots, adding a renewed focus. Creating a new core value around healthy eating allows us to encourage healthy changes in the lives of our customers and Team members who are looking to take charge of their health.

How does the program define healthy eating?

At the basis of our Health Starts Here program are these simple principles:


· Focus on fresh vegetables, fruits, legumes, whole grains, nuts and seeds

· Get healthy fats in moderation from fresh plants sources such as nuts and avocados

Whole food

· Choose foods that are real, fresh, and natural

· When possible, opt for food that is organic, local and seasonal

· Avoid highly processed and refined foods, and those with artificial ingredients

Healthy fats

· Get healthy fats from plant sources, such as nuts and avocados

· Minimize extracted oils and processed fats

· If eating a diet that includes animal products, choose leaner meats and seafood as well as low-fat dairy products

Nutrient dense

· Eat foods with high nutrient content in comparison to toal calories

· Build your menus around plant-based foods to emphasize nutrient-rich meals containing a variety of vitamins, minerals, phyto-nutrients and antioxidants

· Look for the Aggregate Nutrient Density Index (ANDI) scoring system to guide you on healthier choices