Just by making one small change a day, we can improve our nutritional and health status.
Try to make easy changes first and continue to work on it every day until it becomes a habit. After all, we make on average 226 decisions about food each day (according to scientists at Cornell University)!
Here some to get you started:
- Add antioxidant-rich fresh berries to your summer salads for refreshing flavor.
- Try a new protein and fiber-filled snack. Roast canned chick peas (rinsed and dried) with spices in the oven.
- Sprinkle quick oats on top of your favorite muffins or quick breads before baking for added benefit of whole grains.
- Place fresh spinach into your plate before filling with hot pasta for an instant source of folic acid and vitamin C.
- Eat a handful of nuts or seeds with fresh fruit for a satisfying, well-balanced afternoon snack.
- For dessert, opt for a few squares of dark chocolate and berries instead of a high-calorie choice.
- Add a chopped, ripe avocado to your salad, making it less likely to overdo salad dressings and boost healthy fat intake.
- Include fish twice a week for brain and heart health. Try roasted fish and vegetables or tuna mixed with your favorite bean and chopped veggies. Add a touch of olive oil and fresh lemon to each.
- Replace your salt shaker with a salt-free herb blend you purchase or make yourself.
- Froth nonfat or 1 percent milk and add cinnamon or cocoa powder to your coffee in place of creamers and sugar.
- Buy fresh new spices like turmeric, red pepper, nutmeg and cinnamon. Try grating fresh nutmeg on hot cereal or turmeric on a sweet potato.
- Stir pureed pumpkin or cantaloupe into yogurt for nutrients supporting eye health and good bacteria for your gut.
- Add beans to your favorite stews and soup recipes for added fiber and protein.
Helpful Nutrition Websites, Apps
Shopwell.com (and free app): Great shopping tool.
Fooducate.com (and free app): Achieve your diet, health, and fitness goals.
MyFitnessPal.com (and free app): Track your health from anywhere, anytime.
Sparkpeople.com (and free app): Food and fitness trackers.
LoseIt.com (and free app): Food tracker to achieve your weight loss goal.
Eatright.org: Website of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics, the professional organization of nutrition experts with advice to share.
Foodandnutrition.org/Stone-Soup: Blogs written by registered dietitians.
ChooseMyPlate.gov: Practical information to build a healthier diet.
FoodSafety.gov: Your gateway to federal food safety information.
USDA FoodKeeper free app: Helps consumers use food at its peak and reduce waste.
Want even more information and personalized advice? Make an appointment with a registered dietitian. Call us at Hartford Hospital (860.972.2604) and we can tell you how. For information on nutritional support at Hartford HealthCare, click here.