National Nutrition Month

National Nutrition Month aims to promote healthy eating and cooking by focusing on fresh fruits, veggies, and other foods that are rich in vitamins, minerals, and other nutrients. In order to determine which diet is right for your body, you should ensure that it does not contain excessive saturated fats, added sugars, and sodium.

It has been shown that the average American diet is energy-rich but nutrient-poor. And when we say energy, we mean calories! This is where the term “empty calories” comes from – it describes foods that provide a lot of calories without offering much nutritional value. Basically, a nutrient-dense meal consists of fruits, vegetables, whole grains, nonfat and low-fat dairy, fish and seafood, unprocessed lean meat and skinless poultry, nuts, and legumes.

In nearly 90% of cases, we don’t get the recommended amount of fruits and vegetables, but there are some simple and creative ways to achieve a highly nutritious diet plan:

  1. Get Your Fill with Fresh Fruits and Veggies: It is a great time to begin shopping for fresh fruits and veggies at your local grocery store. Fun fact: Eating strawberries offers more vitamin C than eating oranges does. Also, a good reason to eat bananas is that it aids your cardiovascular health, digestion, and blood pressure and gives you a good amount of energy.
  2. Add Whole Grains to Your Meal: Switching to whole-grain versions is the simplest but healthiest substitute for white rice, white bread, and plain pasta. It takes longer for the digestive system to break down brown rice, whole wheat, or oat bread. Tip time: You can sneak a serving of vegetables into a meal by serving spaghetti squash instead of calorie-dense pasta.
  3. Work on a New Hobby: Putting together plans for the coming year is a great thing to do in March – so let’s start planting a garden this National Nutrition Month. Cold weather shouldn’t be a problem as it is possible to start seedlings indoors and then move them outdoors when the weather is warmer. Among the easiest and healthiest plants to grow are lettuce, beans, radishes, peas, carrots, cucumbers, and kale.

With nutrient-dense foods, you’ll get the nutrients your body needs without consuming too many calories. Instead of focusing on specific foods or nutrients, consider your overall eating pattern. For instance, instead of chips, eat crunchy vegetables or a handful of nuts. Moreover, satisfy a sweet tooth with sweet-flavored fruits rather than opting for sugary candies or cookies.

Swap out simple ingredients in your favorite recipes to increase the nutrient density in yours and your family’s meals. Make the most of National Nutrition Month every March by eating healthily and living a healthy¬†lifestyle!

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