Updated:
Original:

Allina to ditch sugary drinks and fried foods in its hospitals and clinics

Author:

No more burgers and fries or large Cokes will be served at many hospitals and clinics in the Twin Cities metro area come the first of the year.

Allina Health will remove sugar-sweetened drinks and deep-fried foods from all its hospitals and clinics by Jan. 1, the Twin Cities-based health care provider announced in a news release Tuesday.

That includes getting rid of the McDonald's restaurant in Abbott-Northwestern Hospital, which has been serving customers there since 1988, according to MPR News.

The Star Tribune notes that Allina has endured criticism for years about having a fast-food restaurant inside a hospital.

Allina decided to buy out the 10 years left on the lease, and the McDonald's will close by May 31, 2016, according to the Minneapolis/St. Paul Business Journal.

Allina's making the move as part of its Choose Healthy campaign to encourage patients, staff and the larger community to adopt healthier eating habits.

Sugar-sweetened beverages like soda, energy drinks and prepared coffee and tea drinks are popular, but they're the leading source of added sugar in many people's diets, according to Allina. And deep-fried foods have a lot of fat and little nutritional value.

Low-calorie beverages with artificial sweeteners will also be banned; Allina said research is starting to show they can also be bad for your health.

What will be available

After removing the unhealthy options, Allina says it will offer more healthy beverages such as water, fruit juice, milk, and unsweetened coffee and tea. It's also going to revamp the food served in its cafeterias, food services and vending machines to provide healthier options.

"As an organization focused on health, it is our responsibility to model and encourage healthy choices," said Allina President and CEO Penny Wheeler in the news release. "By removing sugar-sweetened beverages and deep-fried foods from our facilities, and providing more healthy options, we are helping to make the healthier choice the easier choice for our employees and the communities we serve."

Allina Health operates 13 hospitals and more than 90 clinics in Minnesota and western Wisconsin including Abbott Northwestern, Mercy, United and Unity hospitals in the Twin Cities metro area.

Allina's actions are just the latest in a trend of hospitals and health care providers getting rid of sugary drinks and fatty foods. It notes that at least seven hospitals in Minnesota have taken similar steps recently, including Health Partners, Park Nicollet, M Health (formerly Fairview Health System) and North Memorial.

On a national level, more than 700 hospitals and health care facilities have made similar changes, according to Allina.

Next Up

Screen Shot 2021-10-15 at 10.01.55 PM

Large police presence at Emagine Willow Creek movie theater in Plymouth

There are few details at this stage as to what has happened.

Maple Grove Police Department

Maple Grove-based businessman convicted of fatally shooting wife

Wiseman owns properties in both Minnesota, Nevada and China.

betty and earls biscuits facebook

Jason Matheson's biscuit shop to briefly close ahead of relaunch

Betty & Earl's will shut down for two weeks before reopening under a new name.

Simon Merino Go Fund Me

Worker dies in forklift accident at paper recycling business

The victim was described as a loving father of two who was devoted to his church.

rosie means - go fund me

Authorities ID woman killed by hit-and-run driver who ran red light

A fundraiser was created to support the family after the "sudden and senseless loss."

Prior Lake Football

Watch: Prior Lake stuns Rosemount with last-second hook and ladder

The Lakers dusted off an old favorite to get a victory on Thursday night.

unsplas - maple leaf frost fall lawn

MN gets its first frost advisories, freeze warnings of the season

The coldest spots could dip to below 30 degrees overnight.

Fleck

Ahead of Big Ten clash, Huskers fans spend their Friday mocking PJ Fleck

Huskers fans are in a playful mood ahead of Saturday's game.

Jamal Smith

New 1st-degree murder charge for man accused in youth coach's killing

A grand jury indicted the suspect in connection with the shooting of Jay Boughton.

trick or treating halloween

COVID: Mayo Clinic's tips for staying safe while trick-or-treating

A layered approach, especially for those who aren't vaccinated, is recommended.

Walz

'My patience level is gone': Walz calls on lawmakers to help hospital strain

The governor said only legislators can enact some of the needed measures.

Related