Kern Public Health expands Certified Healthy Restaurant Initiative

July 7, 2022 /

Kern County Public Health has expanded its healthy restaurant initiative “Certified Healthy,” which empowers residents to choose restaurants in their area that offer healthier food options.

With the new expansion, local restraurants including Coconut Joe’s, Better Bowls, Locale Farm To Table Eatery, and Modern Grub are now included in the initiative. Since the 2018 launch, the program has expanded to include “Certified Healthy Mobile” which includes mobile food facilities, such as food trucks.

“Given that Americans eat more than 50 percent of their meals away from home, it is important to recognize and highlight local food facilities that offer healthier food options,” Public Health said in a news release.

According to Kern Public Health, Kern County has some of the highest rates of obesity and mortality due to chronic health conditions in the state. In fact, 78 percent of Kern County adults are either overweight or obese and more Kern County residents die from diabetes than anywhere else in California, Kern Public Health reports.

Out of all California counties, Kern ranks fourth for the highest rates of deaths due to heart disease and has heart disease death rates 43 percent higher than the state average.

“Because of these startling statistics, in February, we issued a Call to Action to our residents, pleading ‘Let’s Get Healthy, Kern,'” Public Health said in a news release. “Together, as a community and with the help of Kern’s food service industry, we can help improve these statistics!”

“Certified Healthy is another free resource available to our community to address obesity and chronic disease in Kern County,” says Brynn Carrigan, Director of Public Health. “Download our Safe Diner app today to assist in your road to better health.”

Certified Healthy uses various nutritional criteria to identify menu items that are healthy and can be used to lower heart disease and obesity risks. Restaurants and mobile food facilities that achieve this bold standard are recognized with Public Health’s Certified Healthy logo on the restaurant grading card or mobile permit sticker.

Also, using a filter on the free SafeDiner app assists users in selecting healthier choices as they navigate the interactive GIS mapping system that pinpoints your location to find Certified Healthy restaurants near you.

To learn more about this exciting initiative, head to the Kern County Public Health website.