Niagara Gazette — March is National Nutrition Month and this year the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics’ theme is to “Enjoy the Taste of Eating Right.” We know that taste is the primary component of why we consume certain foods so it is important that we find the balance between choosing the foods we like with those that provide the nutrients we need.
At Mount St. Mary’s, we have two registered dietitians and a certified diabetes educator on staff to assist our patients and the community. Our goal is to give you the knowledge you need to choose the healthy foods you enjoy and increase daily activity to promote overall health and well-being.
You can enhance the flavor of many foods by your cooking methods used at home. Here are some tips:
• Try pan-searing, grilling or broiling meat fish, vegetables, or poultry. Use a small amount of olive oil to brush on with a combination of herbs and spices.
• Color your plate with vegetables. Try different combinations of sweet and hot vegetables such as banana peppers, pomegranate seeds, bell peppers and sweet onions. If you caramelize your vegetables with a small amount of oil, this will bring out their natural sweetness and makes a great topping for meat, fish or poultry.
• Make half your grains whole grains such as brown rice or quinoa, or experiment with amaranth and wild rice. Many have a bolder and nuttier flavor!
• Add fruit. Try adding lemon, mandarin oranges, lime, and other citrus flavors to your favorite recipe.
• Experiment with different flavored vinegars and oils such as balsamic vinegar, rice vinegar, apple cider vinegar, olive oil, or chili oil.
• Try new things! Many get into a routine of consuming many of the same foods or recipes. For example, try a Mediterranean theme by incorporating more beans, whole grains, fruits, vegetables, fish, and seafood into your daily diet. Push your taste buds and try a fruit, vegetable, grain, spice combination, protein, or cooking method. You can try this by picking out a new food at the grocery store, trying a new recipe with an ethnic background, or you can even order something new at a restaurant. Part of the Mediterranean culture is exercise, so don’t forget to exercise daily!
In March, Mount St. Mary’s hospital is featuring Mediterranean foods throughout the month in its cafeteria. For information on nutrition and diabetes services offered by Mount St. Mary’s call 298-2297.
Debra Hoffman, MA, RD-CDN CDE and Amanda Kessel, MS, RD, CDN of Mount St. Mary’s HospitalDebra Hoffman, MA, RD-CDN CDE and Amanda Kessel, MS, RD, CDN of Mount St. Mary's Hospital