It is almost March and that means National Nutrition Month®! The time of year that dietitians and nutrition enthusiasts nationwide get excited (yes we’re nerds for nutrition). The event was created in 1973 and was originally only a week long. With the health of the nation in danger it was a way to promote the dietetics profession while educating the public about nutrition. 43 years later, with obesity at an all time high, the event is now a full month.
Nutrition professionals across the country participate by holding local events and promoting nutrition awareness in their communities. The Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics has some great handouts and tip sheets to help you with things like eating on the run and eating right on a budget.
This year, Penn State’s Student Nutrition Association is hosting Zach Breeding, a Philadelphia based nutrition entrepreneur, chef, author, blogger, speaker, and clinical dietitian (and you thought you were busy). He will be giving a talk called “Living Deliciously: Savor the Flavor of Eating Right” on Tuesday, March 1st in the Ruth Pike Auditorium (22 BBH building). It is free and open to all students who want to attend. The talk will provide information about how to implement the new dietary guidelines in your diet without sacrificing great food. Afterwards, there will be light refreshments and giveaways so make sure to stop by (if only for the free food)!
The Student Nutrition Organization will also have a table in the HUB on March 1st from 10am to 2pm, make sure to come by for more free stuff and nutrition information.
The last event for this year is a cooking event held on March 31st. Participants will be making a healthy and affordable dinner including salads and dressings, an entree, and a dessert. The best part? It’s 100% free. The Student Nutrition Association is asking only that you bring a non-perishable food item or a donation for the State College Food Bank. If you’re interested contact Samantha Twaroski at firstname.lastname@example.org.
If you can’t make it to any of the events here are a few tips the Academy has come up with to help you improve your diet this year. For more info see the handout 16 Health Tips for 2016.
1. Get to know food labels
It can be harder than you think. Here is a great resource to help you muddle through all the information on food labels.
2. Cut back on added sugars
This is one of the new changes made to the Dietary Guidelines. For help identifying them on food labels visit the MyPlate site.
3. Drink more water
An easy way to reduce calories and added sugars is to drink more water and less juice or soda.
4. Eat breakfast
Breakfast sets the tone for the whole day. Get some ideas for a healthy breakfast from this article.