March is National Nutrition Month and the 2020 theme is “Eat Right, Bite by Bite”. This celebration is to remind people to eat healthy and to raise awareness on physical activity. “Bite by bite” is about making small changes to help you live a healthier life. As a registered dietitian and mom of two young children, I put together a few simple ideas to help you and your families achieve healthy goals and have fun this month.
Try new fruits and vegetables
This month, take your kids to the grocery store and have them pick out a new fruit and vegetable they have yet to try. If it’s something they haven’t liked in the past, offer it again. You can show your kids how the fruit or vegetable can be prepared differently and how it tastes different. Have your kids try the vegetable raw, steamed or roasted and see what they like best. As for fruits, you can incorporate other fruits they like and make fruit kebobs. Additionally, you can also make fruit smoothies.
Activity idea: Plan a Saturday morning trip to Eastern Market! Let your littles explore the food stands and select the foods that look best to them.
Make a new meal
If you’re in a routine of always making the same meals (and lunches) over and over again, this month is a good motivator to try something new. Taking something familiar that you and your family are already used to, try creating it a bit differently. For example, if you have a lot of chicken breast, trying making grilled chicken sandwiches or a chicken stir-fry.
Activity idea: Stop by the library and pick out a cookbook from the Children’s section (640s in the non-fiction aisle) for dinner inspiration.
Get the kids involved
Whether your kids are 2 or 12, there are ways to get your kids involved in the kitchen. Whether it’s washing produce, helping set the table, or even asking them what vegetable they want for dinner, not only can help with confidence and self-esteem, but can help create an interest in food and cooking. And what parent doesn’t want an extra set of hands in the kitchen?!
Activity idea: Buy (or make) an apron for your kids to wear in the kitchen when it’s their time to be sous chef. You can also order these safe but effective children’s baking knives to let them help chop vegetables and fruits.
Increase physical activity
If adding physical activity seems almost impossible, it’s important to realize that it’s ok to start small. With your family, start with 10 minutes a day and then eventually increase up to the recommended amount of 30 minutes a day. Whether it’s taking a walk with your family after dinner, or doing jumping jacks during commercials, getting up and moving as a family, helps achieve a healthy lifestyle.
Whatever way you decide to celebrate National Nutrition Month, creating a healthy new habits is what matters most. Choose something that works fun and most importantly, have fun!
Photo credit: Facebook
About Emily Price
Emily Price is a registered dietitian who recently moved back to metro Detroit after living in New York City for 10 years. She is so happy to bring her East Coast hubby and two daughters, Phoebe and Josie, to her hometown of Huntington Woods and looks forward to exploring all the great things Michigan has to offer. Emily likes to spend time with her family, break a sweat at a Zumba class, and enjoy a glass of Cabernet.