Green Eggs and Ham? “You do not like them, so you say! Try them! Try them! And you may!

As you can see from the subject of our post, we’re channeling the legacy of the immortal Dr. Seuss on his birthday and as we kick off March, which also happens to be National Nutrition Month! This serves as an excellent opportunity to remind us of the importance of a balanced diet and lifestyle. In February, we identified ways a healthy diet could improve heart health. However, good nutrition is also essential in preventing and healing most chronic illnesses. Maintaining a well-balanced diet is critical for your overall health and happiness. In launching National Nutrition Month, I’ve put together five tips to help you jump-start your way to a better diet and strike a balance to achieve optimal results. Enjoy!

Ready to “Rise and Shine”? A good breakfast fuels you up and gets you prepared for the day. Start your day with a healthy breakfast and include lean protein, whole grains, fruits, and vegetables.

Check Your Portions.  Use your plate to determine your portions. Half of your plate should include fruits and vegetables. The other half should consist of healthy grains and lean protein.

Snack Smart. A healthy snack can sustain your energy levels throughout the day. Choose grains, fruits, vegetables, dairy, and protein. Try some raw veggies with cottage cheese or hummus or a tablespoon of nut butter with an apple.

Drink Up!  Water plays a vital role in your healthy nutrition. Staying hydrated boosts your energy aids in digestion and flushes out toxins. Water is your best friend for life!

What’s Cooking? When you eat most of your meals prepared at home, you consume fewer carbohydrates, less sugar, and less fat. Home-cooked food is usually healthier, with more appropriate portions, and as a side bonus, your wallet will thank you as it tends to be less expensive than prepared food or takeout. You can also use this time to bond with family – cooking together increases your interactions and leads to creativity and discussion.

I find that taking small steps to change old habits and improve my health is the key to success. So this week, I challenge you to choose 1 to 3 healthy changes to your lifestyle. You can commit to drinking more water, adding more vegetables into your day, or cooking more meals at home. Remember, every time you eat is an opportunity to nourish your body.