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Make Healthy Choices

Grocery shopping for healthy foods can sometimes be complicated and time-consuming. Health Check, the Heart and Stroke Foundation's not-for-profit food information program, can help you choose foods in grocery stores and restaurants that can be part of a healthy diet.

Health Check's nutrient standards are based on Canada's Food Guide
Every food product and menu item in the Health Check program must earn the right to display the Health Check symbol by meeting specific nutrient standards based on Canada's Food Guide.

Our team of registered dietitians and a volunteer Technical Advisory Committee of independent nutrition experts from across Canada develop our nutrient standards, which reflect the latest science that supports healthy eating recommendations for Canadians. Food companies and restaurants play no part in setting these standards.

Health Check LogoThe Foundation's team of registered dietitians evaluate each participating company's product or restaurant food item on the basis of total fat, saturated fat, trans fats, fibre, sodium, calcium, sugar, vitamins and minerals, depending on its category. When food products meet these standards, they are allowed to join the program. To make sure products continue to comply with the nutrient standards, our dietitians randomly inspect products and menu items on a regular basis.

Read more about Health Check's nutrient standards for fat, fibre, and sodium.

The Health Check symbol can be found on more than 2,000 foods, including vegetables and fruit, grain products, milk products and alternatives, as well as meat and alternatives.

In addition, the Health Check symbol can be found on a growing number of restaurant menus. Look for the Health Check symbol in these food establishments: Boston Pizza, BC Ferries, White Spot, Swiss Chalet, Druxy’s, Spiducci’s, Red Robin, Pizza Hut (B.C. only).

Dining out with Health CheckHealth Check is a voluntary program
The Health Check not-for-profit food information program is open to food companies and restaurants that voluntarily submit products or menu items to be evaluated by the Foundation's registered dietitians. Once accepted into the program, participating companies and restaurants pay a modest annual fee to help cover the costs of operating the program and developing tools to educate Canadians on healthy eating. Health Check is not a fundraising program for the Foundation.

There are healthy products in the grocery store that do not carry the Health Check symbol. With the average grocery store selling more than 20,000 products, busy shoppers have told us that healthy choices can sometimes be difficult to identify. That's why we encourage Canadians to compare products.

The best way to do that is to learn how to read the Nutrition Facts table.

Read more about Health Check's:

Last reviewed February 2011.