National Nutrition Month is here!
National Nutrition Month is here! National Nutrition Month (NNM) is a nutrition education and information campaign held annually in March by the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics. The campaign focuses on the importance of developing sound eating and physical activity habits. The theme for this year’s campaign is “Bite Into A Healthy Lifestyle.” This theme draws attention to the idea that leading a healthy lifestyle is intentional- the result of small, daily decisions to eat healthy and live well. So what changes will you make this month? Here are a few ideas to get started:
- Cut back on your sugar intake. Eating too much sugar can lead to weight gain, fatigue, diabetes, and a host of other medical conditions. There are two kinds of sugars: naturally occurring and added sugars. Naturally occurring sugars are in fruit and dairy products (and small amounts in some vegetables and grains.) The major sources of added sugars are found in: regular soft drinks, sugars, candy, cakes, cookies, pies and fruit drinks, and other grains.
- Curious how much sugar you eat during the day? Start reading those labels, 4.2 grams of sugar = 1 teaspoon of sugar. The American Heart Association recommends that men consume less than 9 teaspoons of added sugar daily, and that number goes down to 6 teaspoons daily for women.
- Go Green! With your food….leafy greens are a nutrition powerhouse- packed full of Vitamins A, K, and C, Iron, B vitamin and fiber. Increase your intake by trying some of these tips: toss greens into your fruit smoothie, instead of chomping on potato chips, try kale chips, add greens to your favorite soup, wilt greens and add them to pasta dishes. Don’t love spinach? Try some other delicious greens like kale, collard greens, swiss chard, broccoli rabe and cabbage. Still not convinced? Read up on the benefits of eating your leafy greens here: http://www.aicr.org/foods-that-fight-cancer/foodsthatfightcancer_leafy_vegetables.html
- Eat your beans! Beans are a great choice for people of all ages. They are naturally high in antioxidants, fiber, protein, B vitamins, magnesium, copper and zinc. The high fiber and protein content in beans will leave you feeling fuller and more satisfied after meals.
For more information, check out http://www.nationalnutritionmonth.org/nnm/