Story by Mass Communication Specialist Seaman Apprentice Dakota Rayburn
PACIFIC OCEAN – Many things, including healthy eating, can fall by the wayside when a Sailor goes underway, which is why the Health Promotions Committee (HPC) aboard the John C. Stennis (CVN 74) is giving Sailors an opportunity to enter into a healthy recipe competition.
If a Sailor’s health conscious recipe wins, it may have a chance to be entered into the Navy Standard Core Menu (NSCM) and be served across the fleet.
HPC will choose three recipes out of those submitted by Stennis Sailors, which will be prepared into samples by members of the food service division’s leadership. From there, the crew will choose their favorite meal and it will be submitted to Naval Supply Systems Command to be tested for eligibility to be an addition to the NSCM, according to Chief Warrant Officer Matt Compton, Stennis’ food service officer, from Pell City, Ala.
“We want things that are going to be reproducible, items that are going to be accessible, it doesn’t have to be fancy things,” explains Lt. Joe Garrett, the HPC coordinator and physical therapist aboard Stennis. “Whole food items, things that are going to provide micronutrients, that’s what a healthy recipe should include, and less of those macronutrients, things we get an abundance of anyways.”
Garrett hopes the healthy recipe contest will help instill a better thought process in Stennis Sailors by showing them what a well-balanced meal is. He added that when we eat, we tend to not plan very well. We grab foods or use recipes that we are used to or are easy to get and don’t require much effort to prepare. Those meals usually have lots of macronutrients like fat, carbohydrates and proteins. They tend to lack micronutrients, the vitamins and minerals needed to stay healthy and well nourished.
“We are trying to make a difference here in the command and in the health choices that people make and I think the more people get involved the more they’re going to get out of it,” said Garrett. “We’re trying to do our best to make healthy Sailors.”

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