Westmed Medical Group joins the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics in observing National Nutrition Month during March. This year’s theme is “Go Further with Food,” and the campaign focuses attention on the importance of making informed food choices and developing sound eating and physical activity habits.
Whether it’s starting the day off right with a healthy breakfast or fueling before an activity, the foods you choose can make a real difference. Two very important areas to focus on are breakfast and snacking.
Let’s start with “Powering up Your Breakfast”. This is one of the most important meals of the day. Most people skip breakfast completely or eat something unhealthy. Often, people make excuses, such as being short on time, or not feeling hungry in the morning.
None of this is true! Even small amounts of food can replenish glucose stores in the blood and in the brain. Breakfast is the most important meal of the day as it provides the energy that your brain and body needs to function. It helps you focus at school or at work, increases productivity and moods, and jump-starts your metabolism to start burning calories.
Consuming a low glycemic breakfast, even a small one, will sustain energy, delay hunger and help with controlling weight.
Here are some easy, healthy, and quick breakfast ideas:
- Light English muffin with 2 tbsps. peanut butter, 1 piece of fruit
- 1slice of whole grain bread with cheese and tomato
- Whole-wheat waffle topped with nuts, berries, and ricotta cheese
- Vegetable omelet cups (see recipe at end of article)
- ½ cup cooked steel cut oats, with berries and nuts
- 1 cup cottage cheese with ¾ cup of fresh fruit
- Greek yogurt with nuts and berries
Plan Out Your Snacks for the Day
Snacks usually get a bad rap because most often they are thought of as being full of fat and sugar. If snacks are planned and healthy, they are actually good for you. Snacks provide energy for your children throughout the day and delay hunger. Snacks can also help bridge the gap of nutrients not consumed at meals. One supporting fact from the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics is that 1 handful of baby carrots can meet all your vitamin A needs for the whole day.
Examples of some healthy snacks are:
- Cut up veggies with ¼ cup of hummus
- 1 rice cake with avocado and tomato
- Sliced apple or pear with 1 oz. of cheese
- Celery sticks with 2 tbsps. peanut butter
- Greek yogurt
- 1 bag Skinny Pop and 1 cheese sticks
Vegetable egg-cups are great source of veggies and protein, they are easy to make, freezable, and microwavable. The recipe is included below.
Remember starting your morning off with a good breakfast and planning healthy snacks throughout the day will keep you energized and focused.
3 cups cut up vegetables of choice
1 tsp. salt
½ tsp. pepper
1 aromatic (I like scallion or chive)
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees
- Grease 2 muffin tins
- Whisk the eggs together in a big bowl
- Add veggies and spices
- Fill muffin tins
- Bake ~ 25 minutes just until middle is set
- Cool completely and freeze wrapped in plastic
- In a Ziploc bag
- Heat on microwave safe dish for no more than 1-2 minutes and enjoy
- Top with avocado and salsa for an extra special treat