March is National Nutrition Month, a nutrition education and information campaign created annually in March by the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics. The campaign focuses attention on the importance of making informed food choices and developing sound eating and physical activity habits. The theme for 2015 is “Bite into a Healthy Lifestyle,” which encourages everyone to adopt eating and physical activity plans that are focused on consuming fewer calories, making informed food choices and getting daily exercise in order to achieve and maintain a healthy weight, reduce the risk of chronic disease and promote overall health.
Here are 5 Tips to Bite into a Healthy Lifestyle from the Academy of Nutrition & Dietetics
1. Eat Breakfast
There’s no better way to start your morning than with a healthy breakfast! Include lean protein, whole grains, fruits and vegetables. Try oatmeal cooked with low-fat milk, sliced almonds and berries or top a whole grain waffle with low-fat yogurt and fruit.
2. Make half your plate fruits & vegetables
Fruits and veggies add color, flavor and texture plus vitamins, minerals and fiber to your plate. Make 2 cups of fruit and 2 1/2 cups of vegetables your daily goal.
3. Be Active
Regular physical activity lowers blood pressure and helps your body control stress and weight. Start by doing what exercise you can for at least 10 minutes at a time. Children and teens should get 60 or more minutes of physical activity per day, and adults should get two hours and 30 minutes per week.
4. Explore New Foods and Flavors
Add more nutrition and eating pleasure by expanding your range of food choices. When shopping, make a point of selecting a fruit, vegetable or whole grain that’s new to you and your family. Try different versions of familiar foods like blue potatoes, red leaf lettuce or basmati rice.
5. Banish Brown Bag Boredom
Whether it’s a brown bag lunch for work or school, make it a healthy lunch packed with nutrition. Prevent brown bag boredom with easy-to-fix, healthy lunch ideas. Try whole-wheat couscous with chick peas; whole-wheat tortilla filled with chicken, mushrooms, onions and tomatoes; baked potato topped with broccoli, low-fat cheese and salsa; or spinach salad with sliced pear, red onion and low-fat feta cheese.