The theme for this year’s national nutrition month campaign, “Put Your Best Fork Forward” reminds everyone that each bite counts. Making small changes in our eating habits can add up to big improvements over time. Starting one forkful at a time may be the easiest way to develop healthier eating habits. Key messages in this year’s campaign:
- Create an eating style that includes a variety of your favorite, healthful foods.
- Practice cooking more at home and experiment with healthier ingredients.
- How much we eat is as important as what we eat. Eat and drink the right amount for you, as MyPlate encourages us to do.
- Find activities that you enjoy and be physically active most days of the week.
- Manage your weight or lower your health risks by consulting a registered dietitian nutritionist. RDNs can provide sound, easy-to-follow personalized nutrition advice to meet your lifestyle, preferences and health-related needs.
Parents can put their best fork forward by modeling healthful eating habits and preparing regular, balanced, homemade meals and snacks with a variety of nutrient-rich foods that the whole family will enjoy. Nutrient-dense foods are naturally lean or low in solid fats and have little or no added solid fats, sugars or sodium.
Equally important to what we eat is how much we eat, which is why this year’s theme encourages small changes in our eating habits. Individuals must balance food and beverages choices to their own energy needs, rather than focusing on a specific food or meal. Improving overall health requires a lifelong commitment to daily healthful eating practices and physical activity.
The 2015-2020 Dietary Guidelines for Americans suggest starting with small changes in order to make healthier lasting changes you can enjoy. Choosing a variety of healthful foods across and within all food groups helps reduce the risk of preventable, lifestyle-related chronic diseases including cardiovascular disease, type 2 diabetes and obesity.
The Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics is the world’s largest organization of food and nutrition professionals. The Academy is committed to improving the nation’s health and advancing the profession of dietetics through research, education and advocacy. For more information, visit the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics at eatright.org.