Choosing nutritious foods and getting enough physical activity can make a real difference in your health. For National Nutrition Month® 2019, in March, the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics and Appalachian Regional Healthcare System encourage people to make informed food choices and develop sound eating and activity habits.
Each March, the Academy focuses attention on healthful eating through National Nutrition Month®. “Through the campaign, we share good eating tips such as how to keep nutritious meals simple, the importance of making food safety a part of your everyday routine, the value of preparing meals with foods you have on hand to avoid wasting food, and how to select nutritious food options when dining away from home,” says registered dietitian nutritionist Robin Foroutan, a New York-based spokesperson for the Academy.
“Eating right doesn’t have to be complicated,” Foroutan says. “Think about what you want your plate to look like and ask if it’s incorporating all the major food groups. Select a mix of lean protein foods, vegetables, whole grains and fruits to enjoy a healthful meal.”
The Academy recommends balancing nutritious foods with physical activity most days of the week. According to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services’ physical activity guidelines, adults should participate in at least 150 minutes of moderate-intensity aerobic physical activity per week, including at least two days of muscle-strengthening activities. Being physically active up to 300 minutes per week has even greater health benefits.
“Look into incorporating physical activity into your daily routine,” Foroutan says. “Walk to work or take a walk during your lunch hour. Do something physical during the weekend, such as playing basketball with your kids or going dancing with your friends. The goal is to get moving; every little bit helps.”
For individualized nutritional recommendations, the Academy recommends visiting a registered dietitian nutritionist. Locate an RDN using the Academy’s online Find an Expert service.
“Registered dietitian nutritionists can help consumers determine the lifestyle balance that provides the nutrients you need while still eating the foods you enjoy the most,” Foroutan says.
Initiated in 1973 as National Nutrition Week, National Nutrition Month® became a month-long observance in 1980 in response to growing interest in nutrition.
To commemorate the dedication of registered dietitian nutritionists as the leading advocates for advancing the nutritional status of Americans and people around the world, the second Wednesday of March is celebrated as Registered Dietitian Nutritionist Day. This year’s Registered Dietitian Nutritionist Day will be celebrated March 13.
As part of National Nutrition Month®, the Academy’s website includes articles, recipes, videos and educational resources to spread the message of good nutrition and the importance of an overall healthy lifestyle for people of all ages, genders and backgrounds.
Consumers can also follow National Nutrition Month® on the Academy’s social media channels including Facebook and Twitter using #NationalNutritionMonth.
In observance of National Nutrition Month®, the ARHS Clinical Nutrition Department is planning various activities throughout March.
- During the entire month of March, look for a weekly taste testing in the dining room at Watauga Medical Center and at Cannon Memorial Hospital. There will be contests for prizes and a variety of current, evidence-based nutrition information available.
- From March 25th through March 30th, there will be a food drive at both Watauga Medical Center and Cannon Memorial Hospital. The food collected will benefit the Hunger and Health Coalition of Watauga County and Feeding Avery County. Collection boxes for non-perishable items will be available in the dining rooms at each facility.
- Stop by the Wellness Center to schedule a consultation with one of our amazing registered dietitians. A consultation will give you highest level of nutrition counseling with both professional and science based nutrition recommendations. Click here to learn more.