10 Easy Tips to Eat Right
You might think that the saying to “eat right” is easier said than done. But you can spiff up your eating habits in small bites with these 10 easy tips.
- Tweak your grocery shopping list. Each week, substitute a more nutritious item for a less nutritious one on your list. For example, instead of regular potato chips, pick sweet potato chips, which are packed with vitamin A and a good source of vitamin C and fiber. Or, choose a cereal with more fiber than your usual brand.
- Go fish—and seafood! The American Heart Association recommends eating fish at least twice a week to help promote good heart health. Fresh fish and seafood are great, but so is stocking your freezer with options from our stores so that a delicious, nutritious seafood meal is never more than a few minutes away.
- Break for breakfast. The morning meal provides important nutrients, helps fuel kids' brains for school, and may help you maintain a healthier weight. Make breakfast super-fast and nutrient-rich with options like whole-grain cereal topped with fat-free milk and sliced bananas, peanut butter on whole-wheat toast and a glass of orange juice, or low-fat yogurt mixed with berries and high-fiber cereal.
- Branch out with new fruits and veggies. Eat a wide palette of colors to get an array of nutrients and important plant compounds—and please your palate, too. Try one new fruit or veggie each week. Consider cardoon, kiwi, kohlrabi—or even a new variety of apple or potato. Fresh is fine, but so are frozen, dried and canned versions. Choose these types of fruits without added sugar or syrup and low-sodium veggies without butter or cream sauces.
- Milk it for all it's worth. Milk supplies the calcium and vitamin D that kids and adults need for healthy bones. Drinking fat-free milk at meals is a healthy habit, but you can also slip milk into many dishes. For instance, make oatmeal, rice, tomato soup, quick breads and muffins with milk instead of water.
- Plus-up pizza night. Enjoy a veggie-loaded pizza—light on the cheese. Serve with salad made with deep greens like romaine lettuce, baby spinach and arugula, and low-fat frozen yogurt topped with diced pineapple for dessert.
- Go whole-grain for sides and snacks. Health experts recommend making half the grains you eat everyday, whole grains. Some research shows that a diet rich in whole grains may promote heart health and a healthy weight. Help meet your quota with an unusual whole-grain side dish like buckwheat, bulgur, whole-wheat couscous, millet, quinoa, triticale or amaranth. Munch whole-grain snacks like popcorn, brown rice cakes, baked whole-grain tortilla chips, and whole-wheat pretzels.
- Get on the bean. Beans, peas and lentils are a budget-friendly source of protein, iron, zinc, folate, and soluble fiber—the type that helps reduce blood cholesterol as part of a healthy diet. MyPlate recommends eating at least one to two cups of beans each week. Enjoy them in salads, soups, stews and chili or as a satisfying side dish like baked beans.
- Eat with your kids. Share meals and snacks so you can "role model" healthy eating and help set the stage for lifelong healthy habits. For example, research shows that teens who eat family meals are more likely to eat breakfast, fruits and vegetables, and drink fewer soft drinks as they get older.
- Treat yourself. Eating well doesn't mean sacrificing favorite foods like French fries, chocolate or ice cream. Savor a small portion now and then.