When you think about “healthy eating”, does “food that tastes good” come to mind? The National Nutrition Month theme, Savor the Flavor of Eating Right, encourages you to enjoy a healthy diet. Flavor definitely rules when it comes to choosing foods to eat, but of course health matters too. Can you have both? Absolutely!
Eating right has to fit your lifestyle. This is why it’s a great idea to meet with a registered dietitian online (RDN), in person, or pick up a few books written by RDNs, to figure out where you are, and what goals you may set. There are many things to consider when choosing what to eat:
- What is your schedule like?
- Do you skip meals?
- Are you overweight? Muscular?
- Do you have food sensitivities?
- Do you have a disease or health problem that requires nutrition therapy?
- Are you an athlete?
There are also many different reasons to apply different diets:
- For instance, if you have metabolic syndrome or diabetes, you should track carbohydrates, and may benefit from a low glycemic diet. Rather than view the Glycemic Index as a quick fix or fad, consider our approach in The Glycemic Index Cookbook For Dummies – it’s simply a tool to use as a way to help you choose a healthy diet. Choosing a diet with foods lower in GI, has many similarities to other healthy diets – such as the Mediterranean Diet and the DASH Diet.
- If you have a family history of heart disease or high blood pressure, the DASH Diet may be a good fit for you.
- If you are an athlete, you’ll need to pay close attention to amount of calories, carbohydrate and protein you eat.
- If you are pregnant or lactating, you also have very special nutrition needs.
- Children and older adults have different nutrition needs compared to younger adults
The good news: All of these “conditions” can be met with a variety of flavorful, healthy food. Learning to try some new foods and test some easy cooking methods, will allow you to savor the flavors, and eat well. Yes, you can have dessert, and no, you don’t have to eat steamed vegetables! If you have never roasted a vegetable, now’s the time to try it. Not only is it super easy, it’s so much tastier!
Learn more about healthy cooking, choosing foods when dining out, and choosing healthy snacks by visiting the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics website.