It’s that time of year when our thoughts turn to baseball, spring flowers, spring cleaning, and a reinvigoration of the commitment to taking care of ourselves. March is National Nutrition Month® and this year’s theme is perfect to help with all of these things – “put your best fork forward.” Here are some of my favorite seasonal ways to help ensure that every bite you take is even better than the one before.
6 Ways to Celebrate on Your Plate this Spring
- Spring clean your menus. This is the perfect time of year to switch from casseroles, soups, and stews to salads, stir fry, and other warm weather options. Many of these come together with minimal or no cooking, making it easy to get outdoors and enjoy better weather and still enjoy a balanced, tasty meal.
- Enjoy the season! Add seasonal fruits and vegetables to your meals and snacks.
- Incorporate your favorite activities. In addition to making better choices in terms of food, moving more is a great way to burn calories and enjoy the season.
- Spice things up. Herbs and spices pair well with all food groups and provide a chance to add flavor without additional sodium. Whether using fresh or dried herbs/spices, master a few that work with your favorite meals. Not sure where to start? Ask the waiter for information on what herbs and spices the chef used next time you have a meal at a restaurant that tastes great to you, then buy those to use at home. Read up on recipes with your favorite fruits or vegetables of the season, and pay attention to what is used to add flavor.
- Get your grill on. All food groups have a place on the grill, including your favorite produce! From grilled pineapple to kabobs or a Portobello mushroom burger, keep the heat out of the kitchen and the flavor in your meals high.
- Leave room for treats. A balanced meal means all food groups are present with MyPlate in mind (half plate full of fruits and veggies + lean protein + whole grains + dairy). But this doesn’t mean dessert is forgotten! Think about how you can work fruit into your dessert choices so you have a nice mix in all the courses.