November is Good Nutrition Month

Believe it or not, we have a whole month that is dedicated to good nutrition. While some believe every day should have a focus on good nutrition, nutritionists know that not everyone does their best at this. What is considered “good nutrition” though? Good nutrition is not the same for everyone. Some people lack certain vitamins more than others, requiring them to ingest more of one food; however, there are guidelines set forth that people should strive to achieve each day.
To start with good nutrition, begin by looking at the food pyramid. While they’ve changed this in recent years, most people know the standard daily nutrition we need according to this food pyramid. It tells you suggested amounts for grains, vegetables, fruits, dairy, and meat and beans. While this gives you guidelines, most people still find it hard to translate these volumes into real eating.
Basically, follow a couple of simple steps when planning your meals to keep yourself eating healthy and nutritious. Just because it’s healthy, doesn’t means its bad either. Here’s some steps to remember:
1. Your plate should have a good balance to it. The colors of your food is important to its nutrition. So, think about the natural color of the food, not the color it is with toppings or seasonings. If you have a good balance of green with red or orange and brown than you probably are on the right track. This means you probably have a green vegetable or salad with a potato or pasta, maybe a small piece of red meat or fish rounding out your plate. Good color is pleasing to the eye too, making your food “taste better.”
2. Don’t be stubborn when it comes to change. You may love whole milk, but try a different kind of milk. Recent studies now suggest that we don’t need as much as the recommended 8 cups of milk a day anymore. Try skim milk or 2% milk. Soy milk or almond milk are other good alternatives that are very healthy for you as well. Both soy and almond milk do have a distinct flavor to them but can be delicious when used the right way. Use these with your morning coffee or in a smoothie, and infuse the nutrition that these milk’s boast.
3. Remember that there’s a limit to red meat. This is one rule that everyone knows but some people can’t seem to handle following. They ask the question: how can they possibly get the protein they need everyday? This is simple: red meat is not the only thing that carries protein. Fish, which is also high in omega-3, a good nutrient, is also high in protein. Nuts, protein bars, beans, tofu and more, also help you get that boost of protein without ever touching red meat.
4. One of the easiest things to remember is don’t over-indulge yourself. If you’re preparing food for yourself at home, pay attention to serving sizes on packaged foods. Most things will surprise you as to how small a true serving size is. If you need help on homemade foods, you can purchase plates that are preportioned. As long as you don’t pile on, these separated plates will help cut down serving sizes. When you’re out at a restaurant, try to eat just half your plate. Take the other half home and have for leftovers the next night. This can be very difficult to do when you’re at a restaurant, so just cut each of your items in half and know that once you’re done with your half, you’re done. 
These tips aren’t anything surprising or difficult to do, it can just be difficult when you’re tempted. The trick is to not crave something and prevent yourself from having it. Try your best to eat healthy most of the time. If one day you want a piece of cake, eat a small slice of cake. Prohibiting yourself from eating something typically backfires and makes eating “healthy” a “diet” rather than simply eating healthy. Keep your nutrition in the front of your mind this month and try your best to eat smart.
Eat Right Academy of Nutrition and Dietitians.(2012). Eat Right with My Plate. Retrieved from:

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