National Nutrition Month 2014: Enjoy the TASTE of Eating Right

Every March, the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics celebrates National Nutrition Month and this year’s theme is “Enjoy the TASTE of Eating Right.” Research shows that taste trumps all else in the decision about what to eat.  No matter if you’re at grocery store, dining out or eating in, you can make healthy choices that are packed full of flavor and nutrition.

At the Grocery Store:

When pacing the grocery aisle, pick a new food to experience. Reach for mangoes instead of apples or Brussels sprouts over broccoli, or try one of my favorites—kefir, instead of yogurt. Kefir is a yogurt-like beverage packed with all of the nutrients that yogurt has, including calcium, protein and healthy bacteria to help you fight off colds and the flu. And get this—it is even lactose-free!

At Restaurants:

Don’t be afraid to order something you’ve never had before. Drive-thru meals can be nutritious, check out some of the healthier options on the menu- you might be surprised. I enjoy oatmeal, fruit salad and a milk chug for a quick-serve breakfast. Milk, whether white or flavored, provides 8 grams of protein, plus 8 other essential nutrients, while the oatmeal and fruit are packed with vitamins and fiber.

At Home:

Put a twist on the way you prepare your staple meals. Don’t just steam broccoli, roast it in the oven with olive oil, topped with chopped garlic and grated parmesan cheese. Serve plain ‘ole grilled chicken with tzatziki sauce made with Greek yogurt, a great source of protein. In fact, it has double the protein as regular yogurt.

Eating healthfully does not have to mean giving up flavor. Check out our healthy dairy recipes that will help you enjoy the taste of eating right, not just during National Nutrition Month, but all year long.

Rebecca Turner, MS, RD, CSSD, LD