Shocked by skyrocketing rates of diet-related disease(s) - especially in children - and fed up by the food industry's dangerous predatory tactics, educator and mom Audrey Lawson-Sanchez founded Balanced to make healthy eating easier and more realistic for children and families everywhere.
Balanced has become a leading voice in the fight for a healthier food system, with its vast network of advocates speaking up against Big Food's influence and championing healthier food environments in schools, hospitals, universities, offices, and other critical community institutions.
Balanced's community-led campaigns and institutional support programs have influenced nutrition policy in schools, hospitals, and offices in cities around the world, impacting the healthfulness of millions of meals annually (and we're just getting started).
Nutrition insecurity is killing us
Imbalanced diets are the leading cause of disease, disability, and premature death. Unhealthy dietary-patterns are responsible for 700,000 American deaths annually.
We're getting sick
The proportion of very young people having a heart attack has been increasing, rising by 2 percent each year for the last 10 years.
A lot of us are sicker than ever
Over 117 million American adults live with one or more preventable, chronic illness(es) linked to imbalanced dietary patterns.
Our diets are dangerously imbalanced
Over 60% of the foods in the standard American diet are ultra-processed food-type products like chicken nuggets and frozen pizza.
Our children are not immune
The current generation of children has a predicted lifespan that is shorter than that of their parents as a result of imbalanced dietary patterns.
We're underconsuming health-promoting food
Only 1 in 10 Americans eat the minimally recommended amount of fruits and vegetables - leaving 97% of us fiber deficient.
Our Theory of Change
Our food environments are the primary determiners of our food choices, which is why the foods that dominate our food environments also dominate our diets.
Over the past century, as our food environments have gotten less healthy, so have our diets. And those less healthy diets have led to less healthy individuals, families, and communities.
That's why we focus on improving food environments through our advocacy, outreach, and nutrition policy initiatives. By focusing on food environments in schools, hospitals, universities, offices, and other critical community institutions, we're making more health-promoting menus available to more people.
Over time, our dietary habits affect the quality of our short- and long-term health, especially related to rates of diet-related disease.
In most cases, our food environments shape the decisions we make about the foods we eat based on what is or isn't available, affordable, or appetizing.
Food environments in institutions like schools and hospitals shape the food choices of large groups of people at the same time, and can have a meaningful impact on individual and public health.
Balancing menus in community institutions means more people eat more health-promoting foods and fewer people experience the negative effects of diet-related disease.
Our Core Values
We embrace the challenges of creating widespread change and approach our work with courage and boldness. We’re unafraid to speak up against powerful systems and we challenge conventional ways of doing things. We take risks, design innovative solutions, and lead with our values.