Are you confused by all of the nutrition tips and diets out there? It seems that there are so many contradicting studies on carbohydrates, fats, coffee, butter, salt, eggs, wheat, protein, etc. The list goes on and on. You may be wondering what you should eat in order to feel your best. March is National Nutrition Month® and we want to make you aware of the resources available to you, as well as share nutrition tips, so you can fuel your active lifestyle in The Villages® community.
Registered Dietitians are Available for You
Do you have questions about what you should be eating? Have you ever wanted to see a dietitian? Good news, you can! The Villages Health has Registered Dietitians available to you that offer nutrition counseling. They will set up one-on-one appointments with you to review your lab results and create a customized meal plan that maximizes your favorite food items, but still allows you to reach your goals.
To learn more or schedule an appointment, please call 352- 674-1770.
12 Nutrition Tips from TVH Registered Dietitians
Did you know that the food choices you make effect the way you think, perform and feel? Nutrition plays a key role in your overall health. Our Registered Dietitians, Kristen Curtis, MS, RD, LDN and Sara Murray RD, LDN, want to share 12 nutrition tips with you:
- Set healthy and realistic goals. You are more likely to stay on track and achieve your goals when you make small changes at a time.
- Aim to eat a variety of foods. Dietary diversity supports nutritional adequacy, as well as prevents boredom. Look at the different colors of your foods – the more, the merrier!
- Increase your fiber intake. Strive to get between 25-35g of fiber each day. This will help you feel full longer, keep you regular and decrease your risk for heart disease and diabetes.
- Listen to your body and know when you’ve had enough. Portion control is the most effective means of weight management.
- Eat right when you’re on the go. Busy times tend to be when our healthy habits take a hit. Plan and pack healthy meals and snacks that are easy to take on the go. When you eat out, don’t be afraid to ask for substitutions or an alternate method of preparation.
- Snack smart. Make snack time an opportunity to incorporate more fruits and vegetables into your day.
- Avoid portion distortion. Estimating portion sizes and calories is hard. Most people underestimate their daily intake. To make estimating your portion sizes and intake possible use measuring cups, serving spoons, food scales, or objects for reference.
- Set yourself up for success. Make a list before going to the grocery store and try to stick to it. Resisting the temptation to buy your favorite treat in the store is much easier than trying not to eat it when you’re at home. It might also help to try shopping earlier in the day before your fatigued mind thinks it’s a good idea to buy that treat.
- Stay motivated by keeping your routine fresh. While routines are important for building habits, they can get old fast. You can have routine while still having variety. Don’t like kale? Try collard greens. Sick of the treadmill? Try a new workout class. Don’t be afraid to try new foods and new workouts that suit your interest.
- Identify your healthy “go-to’s.” Make a list of healthy options at your favorite restaurants, so you don’t need to think twice if you need to order a healthy bite when you’re dining out. All major chains have their nutrition facts posted online. Referencing these and making a decision before you leave the house can make healthy eating even easier.
- Modify your favorite recipes to make them healthier. Swap out white rice for brown rice or quinoa. Use spiralized veggies for pasta. Cut the amount of oil/butter you’re using in half. Choose a leaner cut of protein. Swap sour cream or mayo in a recipe for low-fat plain Greek yogurt.
- Stay hydrated. Your body thrives off of water. Water allows your organs to perform at their best, helps your body flush out toxins and keep your fluids balanced. Some tips to staying hydrated: finish off a large glass of water first thing in the morning; keep water on your mind by carrying around a reusable water bottle without throughout the day and take water breaks during the day.
Still Have Questions About Nutrition? Attend a Complimentary Class
During the month of March we have several different nutrition classes available for you including many new classes. The topics range from the fundamentals of nutrition, healthy eating out, decoding the nutrition label, plant-based eating and much more! These classes are complimentary as part of your care plan designed to help you reach your nutrition goals.
These courses are available at no cost to the entire community, so feel free to invite anyone you believe will benefit.
Please register below for one of our nutrition classes.