Welcome to National Nutrition Month where this year’s theme is “Fuel for the Future.” March holds this annual campaign created 50 years ago in 1973 by the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics. During this month everyone is invited to learn more about making informed food choices, as well as develop more healthy eating habits.
This year’s theme was created with sustainability in mind. It not only incorporates ways to enjoy delicious dishes to nourish ourselves during every phase of life, but also helps us to find ways to eat to protect the environment. Similarly, another goal of this special month is to educate people on the difference between a registered dietitian and nutritionist; we want to make sure that nutrition advice is being received by a Registered Dietitian Nutritionist who can help you to create healthy habits that are not only sustainable, but celebrate your unique needs. Each of us here at The Rite Bite Nutrition Counseling are dedicated RDNs!!
Each week of the month for National Nutrition Month is concurrently filled with specific topics. Each weekly topic is listed below that can be incorporated throughout the month to help ensure that you stay at your healthiest!
Week 1: Eat with the environment in mind. We can do this by enjoying more plant based meals and snacks, purchasing foods with minimal packaging, buying foods in season, shopping locally as often as possible, as well as starting a backyard garden.
Week 2: See a Registered Dietitian Nutritionist. Ask your doctor for a referral to an RDN if needed, so aim to find an RDN that specializes in your unique needs who can provide you with personalized nutrition advice to meet your health goals. We can also perform metabolic testing, as well as create specific meal plans for weight loss, etc. Be careful when browsing online at various websites and articles. Carefully look for the RDN signature instead of just nutritionist; any individual can call themselves this, so the data listed may be inaccurate.
Week 3: Stay nourished and save money. First, plan your meals and snacks. Before you make a trip to the grocery store see what foods you already have at home. When you’re at the store, use a grocery list and shop sales. Do not be afraid to apply for SNAP or WIC, as well as visit your local food bank if you need assistance maintaining food security.
Week 4: Eat a variety of foods from all food groups. Be sure to include your favorite cultural foods and traditions. Eat foods in various forms including fresh, frozen, canned and dried. Avoid any fad diets that usually promote unnecessary restrictions, and stick with the Mediterranean style of eating. Practice mindful eating to ensure your body is getting exactly what it needs.
Week 5: Make healthy food at home. Learn various cooking techniques and new meal preparation skills. Try a new recipe! Also, utilize your leftovers by finding fun creative ways to reuse them. Whenever possible, create happy memories around food by eating with friends and family!!
Have a Happy & Healthy National Nutrition Month!!
Until Next Time,
Katherine Ancona MS, RDN, CDN