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ShopRite offers free counseling with dietitians at its supermarkets

Tapping into consumers' desires to lead healthier lifestyles, ShopRite is offering free dietitian services as well as cholesterol and glucose screenings at its supermarkets.

Other programs coming this year include free support groups, weight-management classes and diabetes classes.

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"We want our customers to know that we're committed to helping them accomplish their individual health and wellness goals, and we're going to be with them every step of the way," Natalie Menza-Crowe, director of ShopRite's health and wellness department, said in an announcement Thursday.

The supermarket chain's team of more than 130 dietitians will offer one-on-one counseling, store tours and other events. Specific programs designed to educate and inspire shoppers will vary from store to store.

The Eat Well, Be Happy Weight Management Classes, a six-week program, will teach portion control, label reading and healthy cooking techniques, and lifestyle maintenance. The hourlong diabetes classes will be taught in partnership with ShopRite Pharmacy. The stores plan annual free cholesterol and diabetes screenings, with the first planned for next month. Some ShopRite stores will offer monthly culinary workshops for adults and children, taught by professional chefs.

Giant Food of Landover, the area's largest supermarket chain, also employs in-store nutritionists who offer individual counseling and lead classes and tours.

ShopRite, the trademark of Wakefern Food Corp., a retailer-owned cooperative based in Keasbey, N.J., has more than 270 stores in Maryland, New Jersey, New York, Pennsylvania, Connecticut and Delaware.

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