NYU Langone doctor takes patients grocery shopping to promote healthy eating

A kind doctor is one who is said to have a good bedside manner. But Dr. Mary Kristine Ellis is different. She shows her compassion for her patients by taking them to the grocery store.

Ellis, a family medicine physician at NYU Langone Hospital – Brooklyn, recently led patients on a food shopping excursion to a neighborhood grocery store to show them the best foods to buy if they want to get healthy and stay that way. 

Many of the patients who agreed to show Ellis the contents of their grocery carts are diabetics or have been told by their doctors that they have pre-diabetic conditions.

The road to good health often starts in the food aisle, according to NYU Langone officials, who said Ellis is taking part in a new program that was designed and is being led by doctors. NYU Langone Hospital – Brooklyn is located at 150 55th St. in Sunset Park. 

During the shopping trip, Ellis showed patients how to read nutrition labels on foods and how to look for trouble signs like high contents of sodium. 

“This is all about helping our patients take control of their health in a fun and engaging way. I’m passionate about helping my patients find ways to stay healthy but you can only do so much in the doctor’s office. Sometimes you need to get out into the real world where people live, shop, and eat,” Ellis said in a statement. 

The patients seem to enjoy getting medical attention away from a doctor’s office. 

A woman named Janice, who said she is trying to lose weight, found the shopping trip highly informative. 

“It’s much more interesting than speaking to a nutritionist over the phone or with the doctor in the office. I found what we were learning more applicable to daily living and easier to understand, especially when Dr. Ellis compared our usual purchases to healthier choices. I’m definitely going to pay more attention to labels and introduce new foods like quinoa and chia seeds when I can,” she said.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *