Adding enough fruit and vegetables to your diet is a problem for many Americans. They tend to consume more than the recommended amount of protein and grain. Including grains that provide simple carbohydrates rather than the whole grain we need. How do you make small adjustments to your meals to get more quality in your food? How do you make sure you get what you need without eating too many calories and food you don’t want?
Half of your meal should consist of vegetables and fruits. They are rich in nutrients and promote health. Choose those with deep, vibrant colors. Choose red, orange, and dark green vegetables such as tomatoes, sweet potatoes, oranges, eggplants, and broccoli.
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Add a lean protein
Choose a low-fat, high-protein food as a side dish with your meal. These include lean beef and pork, chicken, turkey, or beans. Seafood should also be on your plate twice a week if you want a complete diet.
Include whole grains by looking on the label for terms such as “100% whole grain” or “100% whole grain flour”. Full-grain products provide more nutrients, including fiber than the refined grains found in white bread.
Don’t forget the importance of dairy products
Combine your meal with a cup of fat-free or low-fat milk. It provides the same amount of calcium and other essential nutrients as whole milk but contains less fat and calories. If you don’t drink milk, try to consider soy milk. You should also include a non-fat yogurt or other low-fat dairy product.
Avoid adding extra fat. When preparing food, such as heavy sauces, fat added to an otherwise healthy meal. Steamed broccoli is excellent, but if you cover it with cheese sauce, add extra fat and calories. Try other options – like a dash of lemon or freshly grated Parmesan cheese.
Take your time and enjoy your meal
Eat slowly, enjoy the taste and consistency. Pay attention to how you feel. Research shows that it takes 20 minutes for your stomach to signal to your brain that it is full. Fast food can cause you to overeat because you do not give your body the time to indicate that it is complete.
Use a smaller plate to control the portion size. You can eat your whole plate empty and will feel satisfied.
Take control of your food and avoid going out too often. If you eat at home, control your fat, sodium, and calorie consumption. If you eat out, follow the nutritional information. Either before your visit online or with an app. If these options are not available, avoid descriptive words such as fried, in sauce, whipped cream, sautéed, etc.
Search for new foods
Try new foods you’ve never heard of before. Experiment with different lentils, kale, bok choi, and mango. Visit your local farmer’s market to find new vegetables and fruits that come fresh from the farm.
After all, you can healthily satisfy your inner sweet-tooth. Enjoy naturally sweet, fresh fruits. Serve a refreshing fruit cocktail or a yogurt fruit parfait. For a hot dessert, try baked apples with cinnamon.
Building a healthy diet is easy if you follow a few simple rules. If you eat healthier, you will feel better and have more energy.
Use MyPlate to create your diet plan
A good help in creating your nutrition plan is the MyPlate website.
The MyPlate Website is the current nutrition guide of the USDA Center for Nutrition Policy and Promotion. It shows a nutrition circle – representing a plate and a glass.
It divides into five food groups.
Mainly, the MyPlate divide into four segments and one secondary section. These segments comprise around 30 percent cereals, 40 percent vegetables, 10 percent fruit, and 20 percent protein. Besides, there is a smaller section that embodies dairy products, like milk or a cup of yogurt.
It replaced the USDA MyPyramid Guide in 2011, ending the 19-year validity of the USDA Nutrition Pyramid. The MyPlate is shown on food packaging and used in nutrition counseling. Additionally, MyPlate based on the suggestions provided by the Dietary Guidelines for Americans.
You will find MyPlate by the way on the website www.choosemyplate.gov