March is National Nutrition Month, a time to spread the knowledge of healthy eating and to encourage a healthy lifestyle. As the warmth of early spring gradually replaces winter’s chill, it’s also a good time to replace high-calorie comfort foods with nutritious and healthier food choices.
Don’t throw out all the junk food in your fridge, since everyone deserves a little treat now and then! But getting plenty of high-quality food is the best way to stay active and enjoy spring. Follow these simple tips to make low-calorie meals and healthy foods that appeal to your taste buds.
Fruits and Veggies
Fruits and veggies are important sources of vitamin C, fiber, folic acid and other valuable nutrients, and they are indispensable parts of a healthy diet. Seasonal fruits and veggies are the optimal choice, since they contain the most nutrients at their peak. Mix veggies with macaroni, soup, pizza and any other things you eat every day, or simply add some flavor to raw veggies with healthy dips or dressing. Fresh veggies with a bit of pepper, garlic and salt can be more appealing to your taste buds rather than plain and boring steamed veggies.
Studies show people who eat whole grain regularly have a lower risk of heart disease and diabetes thanks to the fact that they are chock-full of fiber. Choose whole-grain products over refined-grain products while you are picking snacks, bread or pasta, and use whole grain as an ingredient in cooked dishes. Try to replace half of the flour with whole-grain flour in cookies or other flour-based treats to include healthy ingredients without compromising on great taste.
Low-fat Dairy Products
Dairy products are a critical part of bone health care, but they can also be a dieter’s nightmare, due to the potential of high-fat contents and calories. Fortunately, there are plenty of low-fat alternatives for whole milk products. If you don’t like the taste of low-fat milk, consider low-fat. plain yogurt. It’s flavorful and rich with protein and contains little fat. Researchers found that eating a diet containing low-fat yogurt and cheese can cut the risk of diabetes by around 24%. Serving Greek yogurt as a dips with finger-sized fruits and veggies, rather than sour cream, cream cheese, or other high-calorie options, is another great snack option to treat yourself with.
National Nutrition Month is the perfect time to start with small steps towards healthier eating habits, and to embrace a healthy lifestyle. Over time, these small dietary changes will play a significant role in improving your health and your life. Let’s get started!