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UK Coaching Team
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Improving Physical Ability

What is Food Literacy and Why is it Important?

Registered Dietician and Sports Nutritionist Sarah Chantler introduces the concept of food literacy and explains why it is a useful tool in the coach’s toolkit to develop well-rounded athletes

Food literacy is a relatively recent concept in nutrition. It has evolved as we have begun to recognise that there are other factors that influence our food behaviours and habits beyond education and knowledge. In simple terms, we do not always ‘do’ what we ‘know’ is correct. 

The term food literacy has been used to give more structure to the different areas that will help build an individual towards making better food decisions and changing our ‘knowing’ into ‘doing’. 

Food literacy is:

...a collection of inter-related knowledge, skills and behaviours required to plan, manage, select, prepare and eat foods to meet needs and determine food intake. Food Literacy is the scaffolding that empowers individuals, households, communities, and nations to protect diet quality through change, and support dietary resilience over time."

Vidgen & Gallegos, 2014

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