You are what you eat, and StarMed Healthcare wants to make that a healthier option for people.
We’re launching a project to make healthy food available where it’s needed most. Think of it as “food as medicine” to address the healthy food scarcity issue in Charlotte and surrounding areas.
The idea was launched during the COVID-19 pandemic when StarMed established testing and vaccination locations throughout Charlotte and surrounding counties.
“As we got into these communities, we realized that there’s little or no access to healthy, nutrient-dense food,” said Mike Vander Baan, Starmount Healthcare Management’s Chief Strategy Officer. “We firmly believe this project is another way we can serve the community.”
StarMed is partnering with Carolina Farm Trust, which manages a network of urban farms (east Charlotte, Huntersville, and Union County) on an initiative to improve access to nutritious food for those in underserved areas.
We’ve also decided to create our own urban farm in west Charlotte.
Last fall, StarMed staffers and volunteers filled planting beds with fresh compost, carefully planted garlic and onions (they’re winter vegetables), and watered them at the new Triangle Drive location.
The ultimate plan is to make nutritious vegetables readily available. Healthy food, then, could be considered a prescription of sorts. For example, patients who consume more nutrient-dense veggies could see health improvements if they battle diabetes, hypertension, or obesity.
We want to make this food affordable. A distribution center in west Charlotte is in the planning stages. We’ll also emphasize to patients why they’re eating the food and how it will benefit them.
And next spring, we’ll plant another batch!
The healthcare professionals at StarMed Healthcare are here for any of your health needs. We’re open 365 days a year with walk-ins welcome. To find a location near you, visit starmed.care/locations/