Wednesday, March 15, 2017

Sarah Barnes, MS, RD/LD of Norman Regional Health System's Diabetes and Nutrition Education Department suggests the following tips to help put your best fork forward.

  • Take it one fork at a time: Change doesn't happen overnight.  Putting your best fork forward encourages the small healthy changes that add up over time. Examples may include:
    • Replacing sugar sweetened beverages for water.
    • Cutting portions in half and taking home leftovers.
    • Adding vegetables and fruits to your diet.
    • Focusing on healthy cooking methods such as grilled, baked, and broiled.
  • Making informed food choices: Food labels and nutrition claims on products can be confusing. For example, when a product is marked fat free, another ingredient is typically added to replace the removed ingredient. Be cautious to claims on the front of packages and become familiar with the Nutrition Facts label to see what other nutrients are in the product. Making the right food and nutrition choices are necessary for biting into a healthy lifestyle.
  • Incorporating daily activity: Being physically active is often overlooked but plays a crucial role in adapting a healthy lifestyle. Regular activity helps to maintain a healthy weight, strengthen bones & muscles, and reduces risk of chronic illness. Research shows that incorporating activity in 10+ minute increments with a total goal of at least 150 minutes of activity per week is beneficial for our health. Start out slowly and increase your activity each day. Tips of increasing activity include:
    • Take a 15 minute walk on your lunch break.
    • Register for a local 5k or fitness challenge.
    • Use an activity monitor to help assess movement throughout the day.
    • Get a friend or family member involved to help with accountability.
  • Working towards a healthy lifestyle requires a lifelong commitment of healthful lifestyle behaviors.
  • For nutritional counseling, Norman Regional Health System offers the guidance of registered dietitians. Those interested can schedule an appointment for an assessment with a referral from their family physician. For further information contact 405.307.5730.