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March Kicks Off National Nutrition Month
Local Experts Offer Tips to Eating Well, Exercise
San Diego, Calif.; (March 9, 2009): The American Dietetic Association has officially declared March National Nutrition Month, which is a nutrition education and information campaign. The campaign focuses on the importance of making informed food choices and developing sound eating and physical activity habits.
Two local experts have teamed up to help bring awareness on how people can make a few small changes in their lifestyle that can add up to big health benefits. Local nutrition expert and registered dietician, Beckette Williams, owner of Nutritious and Delicious Personal Chef Service along with fitness expert, Dona Wilson, owner of Fitness Together Rancho Bernardo have some great tips to get you started:
Get Your Nutrition Right:
Be Adventurous- “Many clients tell me all of the foods they don’t like, but there are many you do like, you just may not know it” says Beckette. “You need to be a little adventurous, for example when looking to eat more whole grains, try different grains such as bulgur, couscous, brown rice and barley. Snacks are a great opportunity to try something new; opt for fresh fruits and vegetables, yogurt, nuts or air-popped popcorn seasoned with Parmesan cheese and herbs.”
Be Realistic- “Moderation is key. Just because a food is healthy, doesn’t give you license to overindulge. Develop an eye for portion size, for example a single serving of:
- Meat, fish poultry is size of a deck of playing cards
- Vegetable or fruit is the size of a woman’s fist
- Dry cereal or snacks such as pretzels is a cupped hand
- 2 Tablespoon peanut butter is size of a golf ball
“At home you can start by using smaller dishes for meals and never eating out of the bag or carton. At a restaurant, ask for half portions and don’t be afraid to take a ‘doggie bag’ home.”
Be Flexible and Sensible: Foods are not good or bad. All foods fit into a healthful eating plan. Balancing food choices from the Food Guide Pyramid and checking food labels help.
Its Time for Fitness:
Start Small- “When beginning a workout program I always advise clients to have a long-term and then short-term monthly goals. Maybe its losing two pounds per month or making sure you workout three times each week, whatever it is make sure you stick to it” advises Dona. “Starting out too aggressive, like vowing to workout six days a week until you reach your goal, is often just too much and then people quit altogether.”
Focus on big muscle groups- “When starting out you want to make sure you are doing exercises that will burn the most calories, by engaging as many muscles as possible. Squats, push-ups and sit-ups are all good examples. To start, try 3 sets at about 15 reps each, and increase as you progress.”
Record your progress- “This may not seem very helpful, but when you have hit a lull in your progress and may be discouraged, looking at how far you’ve come can be a great motivator. It will keep pushing you to your goal and help you stay on track” advises Dona.
Beckette Williams and Dona Wilson are both available to discuss National Nutrition Month live in-studio; Beckette is able to demo a quick & healthy meal and Dona can show viewers a simple at-home workout.