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Health & Nutrition

The Lighter Side of Italian

From casual to fine dining, the push to use local, fresh ingredients is spreading, with chefs incorporating the practice in a variety of cuisines. In southeast Michigan, Chef Luciano Del Signore is bringing this approach to Bigalora Wood Fired Cucina, for a menu that offers lighter, healthier, and more authentic Italian cuisine.

Diners Weigh In on Healthy Menus

Healthy, fresh, organic, low-calorie—these buzz words are inundating menus in chains and independent restaurants alike, all across the U.S. For instance, Cracker Barrel, which has locations up and down the nation’s interstates, introduced its Wholesome Fixin’s menu in September, hoping to capture the market on low-calorie Southern cooking.

How Restaurants Can Educate Consumers on Protein

To learn about the recommended daily intake of protein, consumers rely on health websites, doctors, and food labels, according to the NPD Group. But the barrage of sources has not created a more educated group of diners; 71 percent are still unsure of the actual amount of protein the need.

Unilever Food Solutions Committed to Sustainability

Leading the charge to remove 10 billion calories from foodservice menus by the end of 2015 and committing to 100 percent sustainably sourced agricultural raw ingredients are two ways that Leo Oosterveer, chief executive officer of Unilever Food Solutions, has illustrated his commitment to make powerful changes in the food industry.

Entrepreneur Brings Wild Pizza Joint to Brooklyn

Entrepreneur Miki Agrawal partners with restaurateur Walid Hammami (former owner of Café Rafaella and Angelina) to open the third U.S. location of her gluten-free pizza and Italian specialties restaurant concept, WILD, in Brooklyn, New York.

Restaurant Review App Available on Google Play

Spectrum Solutions presents Soupfly, an app that shows you the health score ratings and reviews from the leading restaurant review sites.Th Soupfly app is available on Android devices, and will soon debut a version for iPhones.

NRA Partners with eHealth on Insurance Coverage

The National Restaurant Association announced it is partnering with eHealth, Inc. to offer tools and resources to industry employees looking to find health insurance coverage.“A critical part of our work as an association is to offer solutions for our members,” says Phil Kafarakis, chief innovation & member advancement officer, NRA.

NRA’s Kids LiveWell Reaches 42,000 Locations Nationwide

In celebration of National Nutrition Month, the National Restaurant Association announced its Kids LiveWell initiative has grown to 42,000 restaurant locations nationwide.The voluntary program, which provides a growing selection of healthful children’s menu choices in every state, now counts more than 145 restaurant brands as participants, including new national companies Cosi, Jamba Juice, and Rainforest Café, as well as Ovation Brands’ Country Buffet, HomeTown Buffet, and Old Country Buffet, among other regional chains and independent restaurants.

The Shed Switches to Natural Beef

Diners looking to eat “junk free” barbeque beef can now do so at The Shed BBQ & Blues Joint courtesy of Meyer Natural Angus Beef. The restaurant with two Mississippi locations started the partnership with the country’s leading producer of humanely raised antibiotic and hormone free beef in February.

Most Allergy-Friendly Restaurant Chains

Red Robin Gourmet Burgers, Bonefish Grill, and Burtons Grill lead restaurant chains in accommodating food-allergic diners, according to Allergy Eats’ 2014 list of Most Allergy-Friendly Restaurant Chains in the U.

Piccadilly Restaurants Make Eating Light Delicious

Piccadilly Restaurants is proud to offer guests a complete meal–an entrée and two sides–for under 500 calories from their new Light Meals Menu.Entrées include a choice of Small Chopped Steak, Roast Beef, Grilled Fish, or Grilled Chicken.

Soyfoods Council Launches Soy Recipe Redo Contest

Soyfoods Council launched its Facebook recipe contest, the Soy Recipe Redo. To enter, simply redo your favorite recipe by incorporating soy to make it more healthful and improve its nutrition profile. Then, submit your entry on the Soyfoods Council Facebook page.

Seasonal Citrus

Though local sourcing gets all the hype, seasonal sourcing is just as important for quality, taste, and the environment. It’s easy to forget that citrus fruits—though available year round—reach their tastiest during the winter months.

Chains Ramp Up the Healthy Options

Consumers are craving healthier fare, whether it is dining on entrées that incorporate one or more Super Foods, such as kale or quinoa,  eating locally grown and seasonal produce, or wanting dishes that are cooked with fresh ingredients.