We all have favorite foods that we enjoy. According to USDA ChooseMyPlate Tip Sheet, you can enjoy your meals while making small adjustments. One of the easiest things we can do is to fill half of our plate with fruits and vegetables. Make your protein portion a little smaller and pick whole grains. Add your low-fat or non-fat dairy and you are on your way to a healthier meal.
Here are some tips to enjoying your meals:
- Get to know the foods you eat. Use the SuperTracker https://www.choosemyplate.gov/supertracker/ to learn about the foods you eat. Make healthier selections by using these free online tools. You can find out the kinds of foods and how much to eat. It is free and easy to use.
- Options on your Custom SuperTracker:
Track your physical activity
- Track the foods you eat
- Set 5 goals to improve health habits
- Manage your weight
- Receive coaching tips
- Use a Smaller Plate
Use a smaller plate at meals to help with portion control. That way you can finish your entire plate and feel satisfied without overeating.
- Take your time
Be mindful to eat slowly, enjoy the taste and textures, and pay attention to how you feel. Use hunger and fullness cues to recognize when to eat and when you’ve had enough.
- If you eat out, choose healthier options
Check and compare nutrition information about the foods you are eating. Preparing food at home makes it easier to control what is in your meals.
- Satisfy your sweet tooth in a healthy way
Indulge in a naturally sweet dessert dish- fruit! Serve a fruit parfait made with yogurt. For a hot dessert, bake apples and top with cinnamon.
- Make treats “treats,” not everyday foods
Treats are great once in a while. Just don’t make treat foods an everyday choice. Limit sweet treats to special occasions.
Remember to enjoy the food you eat, make healthy substitutions and move more. Take a few minutes to sign up for the SuperTracker to help you get “on track” to a healthier lifestyle.
Writer: Michelle Treber, LD, Family and Consumer Sciences Educator
Source: USDA www.ChooseMyPlate.gov