Not only does the month of March signify Spring, but it also represents National Nutrition Month. So while you put away your heavy winter clothes, you can also shred a few winter pounds. National Nutrition Month is an annual campaign created by the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics that educates and informs people every March on the importance of making good food choices and developing physical activity habits. It teaches individuals how to eat a balanced diet and how to read nutrition facts labels. By consuming fewer calories, getting daily exercise, and making educated food choices you can manage your weight successfully and reduce the risk of chronic disease.
The Team at San Simeon Support Healthy Diets
To recognize National Nutrition Month, San Simeon by the Sound hosts a monthly cooking club organized by our Therapeutic Recreation Department, in which healthy foods and recipes are prepared on site. Registered Dietitian Deborah Rhodes MS RD CDN also gathers and prepares information to discuss with the residents, including known and unknown diet facts and nutrition information. Ms. Rhodes also facilitates active resident participation, including memory and sensory recall (sight, sound, smell) as the recipes are prepared. The residents are then able to enjoy the nutritional food that they have taken the time to collaborate. A similar interactive Nutrition Education Program is provided monthly with San Simeon’s Adult Day Care Program as well.
Incorporate Healthy Decisions into Your Daily Routine
We are all busy people, but it‘s important to take the time to include these habits into your lifestyle in order to live a healthy and prosperous life.
- Don’t skip breakfast: Breakfast is your most important meal as it is the first chance to refuel. Breakfast helps jump-start your day by giving you energy, improving your concentration, and it helps balance your metabolism.
- Get moving: Exercise doesn’t mean you have to go to the gym for an hour every day. Any kind of physical activity, whether doing housework, gardening, yard work or walking your dog is just as good.
- Choose wisely when dining out: Cooking at home is the best option as it allows you to know exactly how much calories, sodium, and fat are in the food. However, when you dine out, choose steamed, broiled, baked, grilled or roasted foods rather than foods that are fried, basted, braised, crispy, or pan-fried as these menu items are high in fat. Ask that sauces or butter be served on the side so that you can choose how much to use. It’s also a smart idea to take half of your meal home to avoid over-eating.
- Keep empty calories at a minimum: Empty calories, such as soda, juice, Kool-Aid, candy, and sweets may be tasty, but they provide no nutritional value. Instead, choose flavored water or flavored seltzers to substitute for soda and sweetened drinks, and choose fresh fruits to replace candy and sweets. Fresh fruits can be just as satisfying as they give that perfect sweetness while providing health benefits.
Remember that food decisions make an impact on your overall health. However, you don’t have to completely cut out everything you enjoy. Eat what you love – just less of it!