(Courtesy of HRH) There’s no time like the present to consider your eating habits and make healthy changes—especially because March just happens to be National Nutrition Month, an educational campaign designed to draw attention to the importance of making educated decisions about what you eat and drink and developing healthy eating and exercise habits.
This year, National Nutrition Month is exploring how the right fuel can help you achieve more. Whether you’re starting your day off with a nutritious breakfast or preparing for an athletic event, choosing the right foods can make all the difference. You can also have a positive impact by preparing your food at home and buying within your local community. This month’s theme is devoted to helping people learn to adopt healthier habits while minimizing food waste for an inside-and-out nutrition makeover.
Hudson Regional Hospital provides advice and helpful suggestions that can be used for dealing with nutrition. Based on the most recent data and input from Hudson Regional Hospital physicians, here is a selection of tools that can be applied to receive better nutrition for your overall well-being and to start forming healthier practices this month.
Take Inventory of Your Kitchen Before You Shop
Before buying more food, consider what you already have on hand. You might find that you don’t need to shop just yet or that you need fewer groceries than you thought. Buy ingredients that complement what you already have to make it easier and less expensive to prepare healthy meals at home—a strategy that’s as good for the environment as it is your waistline.
Pay Attention to Portion Sizes and How Fast You Eat
Eat and drink only what you need. Everyone’s calorie needs are different. Listen to your body, and eat only what you need to alleviate your hunger. Resist the temptation to eat or drink more than you need.
It takes your stomach 20 minutes to tell your brain that it is full. However, most people eat a meal in 10 minutes. Studies show that fullness is a complex concept that combines the number of times you chew, the time you spend eating, the look of the food on the plate, as well as the actual amount of food you eat. Technically, slow eating increases levels of two appetite-lowering chemicals (peptide YY and glucagon-like peptide-1).
Expand Your Dietary Horizons
Choose a variety of foods from all the food groups each day to ensure that you are consuming all the essential nutrients your body needs for optimal health. National Nutrition Month is a great time to try a new fruit or vegetable or cook some new healthy recipes. Including a wide variety of foods in your diet will help give you the energy you need each day as well as the protein, fiber, vitamins, minerals and so on you need to stay healthy.
Get Your Kids Involved
Kids love a good celebration! Use National Nutrition Month as a way to teach them more about healthy eating. Make it fun by letting kids choose a few new recipes to try. Talk about what makes a food healthy, and let them help with age-appropriate cooking or food prep tasks. Kids are much more likely to eat something they picked out themselves, so give them healthy guidelines, and then hand over the decision-making power.
Find a Physical Activity You Love
Part of good health is getting plenty of exercise. If you find exercise boring, it’s time to look for a nonconventional way to burn calories, build strength and protect your heart. Dancing, swimming, hiking and gardening are all excellent forms of exercise. Try walking to shul every day instead of driving. Whatever you enjoy, do it regularly for the best benefits.
Celebrate National Nutrition Month this month by working on building new habits and making food choices that are better for you and the planet.
About Hudson Regional Hospital
Hudson Regional Hospital offers preventive and other services both on an inpatient and outpatient basis. Patients can inquire about these services or schedule appointments by contacting the hospital directly, either via telephone at 201-392-3100 or via email at [email protected] Patients facing medical emergencies should proceed directly to the emergency room. The emergency room contact number is 201-392-3210.
For a tour of the new Hudson Regional Hospital or to meet the owner and executive staff, physicians should call George Matyjewicz at 201-392-3436 or email [email protected].