Bite into a Healthy Lifestyle: March is National Nutrition Month!
February 9, 2015
February 9, 2015 –ELKO, NV
Each March, the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics encourages Americans to return to the basics of healthful eating through National Nutrition Month®. This year's theme, “Bite into a Healthy Lifestyle,” encourages consumers to adopt a healthy lifestyle that is focused on consuming fewer calories, making informed food choices and incorporating daily exercise to achieve and maintain a healthy weight, reduce the risk of chronic disease, and promote overall health.
Healthy snacking can be part of a healthy diet. In fact, healthy snacks provide an energy boost for the mid-afternoon lull, prevent overeating at meals, and provide opportunities to eat more fruits, vegetables, and whole grains. Snacking helps keep metabolism moving, blood sugar more stable, and aids in weight management goals as eating several small meals and snacks per day can lead to weight loss.
Incorporating 150-180 minutes of moderate to vigorous intensity exercise each week as been connecting with better outcomes for weight management, diabetes control, and better overall health. Come visit the NNRH Booth at the Ruby Radio Health and Fitness Fair on March 14, 2015 to learn more about healthy eating.
Below are tips for healthy snacking:
- Plan your snacks. If you plan ahead for snacking and prepare healthy snacks at home before leaving the house you will be less likely to opt for the vending machines or convenience stores. This will take the edge off hunger and prevent overeating at the next meal. Snack ideas include fresh fruit, air-popped popcorn, whole-wheat crackers, dried fruit and nut mixes, almonds and fat-free yogurt.
- Make snack calories count. Use snack time as an opportunity to fill the gaps in your daily diet. Snack on foods that are nutrient dense including; fruits, vegetables, whole grains and low-fat dairy – foods that often lack in our diet.
- Go easy on the empty calories. Snacks that are high in calories, sugars, and added fats provide “empty calories” and minimal nutritional value. Examples include candy, chips, sodas, etc.
- Listen to your hunger cues. Snack only when you are hungry, not because you are bored, stressed, or angry. Many times we will regret what we eat if we are snacking out of emotion. Exercise, like going for a walk, can be a great alternate to eating out of emotion.
- Snack on sensible portions. As with planning ahead for what type of snack to bring, how much you pack is important too. Use single serve packets, small containers, or snack bags and measure out portion sizes. Do not eat directly from the package!
- Quench your thirst. Many times we think we are hungry but are actually thirsty. Try drinking water, low-fat or fat-free milk, or calorie free drinks instead. Try adding lemon, cucumber, or berries to your water and enjoy as a fruit infuser. Flavored drinks can be high in sugar, so make sure to check the label.
Contributed by: Courtney Nalivka MS, RDN, LD