Editor's Note: This article was submitted by Carol Mabry, Exercise Physiologist at OhioHealth and Strive to Thrive personal trainer.
When it comes to healthy eating, strive to meet the recommended daily allowance (RDA) of nutrients by consuming a wide variety of foods from the five main food groups – fruits, vegetables, grains, protein and dairy. Not only should your food selections include a mix of macro nutrients, such as, carbohydrate, fat and protein, but also a wide variety of vitamins and minerals.
Below are some simple tips to help you reach your healthy eating goals.
Include a mix of carbohydrate, fat and protein with every meal and snack.
Choose a variety of foods from each food group and experiment with new food choices and preparation methods.
Color your plate with fruits and vegetables. Each color represents a different concentration of vitamins and minerals.
Limit your overall intake of sugar, sodium and solid fats.
Replace beverages high in sugar, caffeine and calories with water. Shoot for eight 8-oz glasses of pure water a day.
Along with these general recommendations, here are some guidelines regarding food groups.
Aim for 5-9 servings of fruits and vegetables each day. Vegetables can be fresh, frozen, canned and dried options, as well as 100% fruit and vegetable juices.
Make half your grains whole grains. Check the ingredients and make sure “whole grain” is at the top of the list.
Incorporate a variety of lean protein sources in your diet and enjoy fish/seafood meals two or more times per week. Meat, poultry, fish, seafood, eggs, nuts, seeds, soy products and beans/peas make up the protein food group.
Have three cups of low-fat or fat-free dairy products each day. Dairy products, such as yogurt, cheese, milk and calcium-fortified soy milk are high in calcium.
Include healthy fats in your daily eating plan. Choose mono- and polyunsaturated fats and limit saturated and trans fats.
For more healthy eating tips visit www.choosemyplate.gov.
If you’re interested in learning how to make healthier food choices at the grocery store, join an OhioHealth registered dietitian for a local supermarket tour. Tours are held throughout the year at the Ontario Walmart and Ashland Road Kroger stores. For more information, or to register, call (419) 520.2550.