THE BRONX - A Bronx hospital is sending a message to its patients and staff that now is the time to live a healthier life.

Montefiore Medical Center has banned fried and high sodium foods and replaced them with grilled food, grains, vegetables and fruit to be served at the hospital’s three locations. The new menu is part of the city’s Health Hospital Food Initiative to promote healthier lifestyles for patients and employees.

Officials say they've cut down on portion size, increased the vegetarian options and placed diet drinks, juice and rows of water in vending machines.

The hospital has received three gold standards from the city’s Department of Health for its effort.