It's National Nutrition Month, and the theme from the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics is "Enjoy the Taste of Eating Right." So, how will you enjoy the taste of eating right? Try some of these inspirational ideas...
Introduce New Foods to Your Diet
Now is a great time to introduce new foods to your diet. Try healthful foods like fresh fruits and vegetables, whole grains, lean protein, or nonfat dairy. And yeah, these additions should be healthful. Skip the latest new snack cake flavor or a fancy bag of chips.
Try introducing one new food per week. You could pick up an interesting new fruit during your next grocery run, or talk with a vendor at your nearest farmer's market about a fun vegetable to try. Find out what's fresh, tasty, and in-season at http://healthymeals.nal.usda.gov/features-month/whats-season. You can also talk with your dietitian about which new foods might be best for you.
Healthify Your Menu
Give your weekly menu a health boost! Consider substituting a few ingredients in one of your favorite recipes to improve the nutrient profile of your meal. Or try one new and balanced recipe per week. You can "healthify" your menu without having to think twice!
For smart ingredient substitutions, try...
- Replacing butter with a neutral oil. Yes, the calorie count will be similar, but the unsaturated fats in oils are way better for your heart than the saturated fat in butter.
- Switching in egg whites for whole eggs.
- Using fresh herbs and spices to flavor foods instead of using salt. Vinegar or lemon juice can add oomph to a dish too.
- Choosing lean ground meats instead of traditional ground beef. If you're going for ground poultry, try ground chicken breast without the skin.
For cooking inspiration, try...
- Mixing things up with one new and healthful dish per week. You never know when you might find your next home run meal!
- Getting recipes from an online healthful cooking database like http://foodandhealth.com/recipes.php.
Stephanie Ronco has been editing for Food and Health Communications since 2011. She graduated from Colorado College magna cum laude with distinction in Comparative Literature. She was elected a member of Phi Beta Kappa in 2008.