March is National Nutrition Month. National Nutrition Month has been around since 1973 but it just seems to be another thing that gets ignored. At my Table, I am focusing on Nutrition this March and providing you with 10 Nutrition Tips for 2022 to make into lifetime habits.
Nutrition is supposed to be promoted. Wouldn’t it be nice if the medical, health world, and the government would stop everything and look at what they are promoting? They would look with the eyes of nutrition and promote good eating habits. Maybe 2020 and 2021 are a wake-up call to promoting good nutrition and health.
Could we promote good nutrition to solve some problems? This my friend is a dream. Maybe we could start by changing some of our own eating habits and some good could come out of 2022.
10 Nutrition Tips
Give me the Soapbox as a Registered Dietitian, these are my top 10 Nutrition Tips for 2022- this National Nutrition Month
Drink plenty of water, and hot liquids to stay hydrated. This will flush out the toxins in your body, rev up your metabolism, and flush foods through your body to help with constipation. It will also fill you up so you won’t eat too much.
Eat 5 or more a day of vegetables and fruits. Eat a rainbow of colors in your diet with these foods. Fruits and veggies will provide fiber, vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants your body needs. Plus, they are lower in calories and fill you up. Make your plate half veggies at lunch and dinner. See link to 21 ways to eat more vegetables blog.
Eat fish 2 times a week. Remember this is your goal. The omega 3 fatty acids and fish oils are good for your heart and brain. Start with fish once a week.
Make a grocery menu and list before you go grocery shopping. You will have a plan and eat intentionally throughout the week. Serve healthy homemade foods. See link to menu planning blog.
Aim for 3 servings of dairy a day for calcium. If you don’t drink milk or do dairy foods make sure you are getting your calcium in your system with other foods. Dairy will also provide Vitamin D- which you should also be getting from the sun.
Walk, bike, hike, run, or do aerobic exercise 5-6x per week. Sometimes exercise can spark an appetite or decrease an appetite. Just keep moving- our bodies need movement. See link to walking blog.
Remember to get foods high in Protein. These foods are good for your body for skin integrity/healing and muscle. Too much protein may not be good for the kidneys but don’t neglect it because you need it. Foods high in protein include fish, chicken, meat, eggs, nuts, beans, milk, and some grains.
Limit sugary, salty, and fatty foods. Eating too many of these can offset fruits/veggies and protein in your diet. Too much sugar can lead to inflammation and weight gain and too much sodium can lead to cardiac issues. Extra fat can lead to weight gain and cardiac issues. This would include sugary drinks, chips, added sugars, salts, and fats or foods that are ultra-processed.
Keep your gut healthy with probiotics. Eat foods high in fiber for prebiotics and foods high in probiotics such as yogurt and fermented foods. Add a supplement if you don’t like probiotic foods. Remember not all probiotics are created equal with their many strains, so do some research. See blog on Fiber.
Avoid charred meats or overly processed meats with nitrates and preservatives. This is important for cancer prevention and to keep your colon healthy.
Nutrition is a lifelong job we must work at to keep our diets healthy and keep our bodies feeling good.
If you smoke, are overweight, and consume alcohol you may want to look at how these are affecting your health negatively and make some changes in your habits and diet.
Changes Start Small
What kind of changes can you make in your diet to eat more nutritious foods? Which of the 10 tips do you need to work on or simply which food do you need to quit or limit or eat more of?
We all can make changes. I don’t eat 100% perfect and can make some smart changes too. Start a new habit today. Pick March to make some changes in your diet and work at making March the start of your best nutrient year.
If you change one of these habits each year for 10 years you are better off in 10 years than doing none of them. One change is better than no changes at all.
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