March is National Nutrition Month which means this is a great time of the year to re-focus on including healthy eating habits into our daily lives. This year’s theme for National Nutrition Month is Eat Right, Bite by Bite. Good nutrition doesn’t have to be overwhelming; instead, small changes in your diet and lifestyle can add up to make a big difference on your health.
Here are some simple nutrition tips that can help make a big difference:
- Decrease portions. This is something that all of us can improve on. By watching our portions, we are still able to enjoy some of the foods we love but for far fewer calories. Simply using smaller plates, bowls, and cups can help us reduce how much we eat. Don’t take seconds helpings or mindlessly munch on the food sitting in front of you.
- Include healthy foods from all food groups. Fad diets are often restrictive and eliminate food groups. You may have success with this at first, but restrictive diets fail in the long run. Aim to have a balanced plate where half your plate is fruits and vegetables. Vary your sources of protein to include meat, poultry, seafood, dairy, beans, nuts and seeds. Choose whole grains often such as whole wheat bread, oats, barley, brown rice and quinoa. By having a balanced plate, you are getting a variety of nutrients to fuel your body and you don’t get burnt out of eating the same foods all the time.
- Set yourself up for success with meal planning. Plan out your meals and snacks for the week to include all the food groups. Make a grocery list and stick to it. If we have our pantry, fridge and freezer stocked with healthy options it makes eating healthy a no-brainer. Pre-portion snacks into small baggies or containers so we aren’t mindlessly eating out of the package.
Try these recipes so you can Eat Right, Bite by Bite!
One Pan Roasted Chicken and Vegetables
1 lbs. chicken breast, cut into cubes
2 cups baby carrots, cut in half lengthwise
2 cups broccoli florets
1 small red onion, cut into large chunks
2 Tbsp olive oil
¼ tsp salt
½ tsp black pepper
1 tsp Italian seasoning
- Preheat oven to 425⁰F
- Cut all vegetables into large pieces and chicken into cubes. Place the chicken and veggies on baking sheet. Add olive oil and seasonings. Toss ingredients to combine.
- Bake for 20-25 minutes or until chicken is cooked and vegetables are tender.
Egg Roll in a Bowl
1 lbs. ground sausage, beef, or turkey
7 cups coleslaw mix
2 Tbsp less sodium soy sauce or coconut aminos
½ tsp ground ginger
1 tsp garlic powder
½ cup green onions
½ Tbsp red pepper flakes, optional
- Cook meat stirring and crumbling until cooked through. Drain and rinse meat and return to pan.
- Stir in coleslaw mix, garlic, ginger, soy sauce and stir.
- Top with green onions and drizzle with more soy sauce or sweet and sour sauce if desired.
By Abby Kipfer