Happy Nutrition Month

  • Published
  • By SSgt. Randy Hall
  • 439th Aeromedical Staging Squadron
Editor's note: SSgt. Hall is the noncommissioned officer in charge of nutritional medicine at the 439th ASTS.

Happy Nutrition Month!

How many of you even knew that it was National Nutrition Month?

National Nutrition Month was started over 40 years ago. March is a month to educate the general population on proper health and nutrition. This year's theme is Eat Right, Your Way, Every Day.

Everyone likes to eat. Some people like to eat a lot. Most people eat several times a day. Sometimes we are very busy so we eat something quick and sometimes we prepare a meal for our families, or even eat a meal at a restaurant.

So what am I getting at? There are plenty of choices out there for meals but when it comes to "eating right," that comes down to making the proper nutrition choices.

So where do your eating choices stack up?

All the foods you eat over the course of a day, week, month or a year impact our health. A great tool to use is body mass index. A lot of people don't like when I start talking about BMI, but one needs to remember that whether you're a "couch potato" or a bodybuilder, your BMI will be the same.

A great way to understand BMI: It's the stress that your weight puts on your heart and internal organs.

Let's be honest -- most of us are going to have that occasional "treat" meal or day when we splurge. But if you can make most of your days be well-balanced, include the recommended amounts of fruits (at least 2 cups), vegetables (at least 2 ½ cups) and whole grains (at least 3 oz.) and exercise good judgment when it comes to portion sizes, you'll be on the right track to making lifestyle choices that can affect your health now and in the future.

One great tool to use as a guide to eating well is the MyPlate.gov graphic.USDA's MyPlate replaced the MyPyramid as the US government's primary food group symbol as an easy-to-understand and easy-to-use program to help people adopt healthy eating habits coming from the 2010 Dietary Guidelines. You can find information and tips to good eating at www.choosemyplate.gov.

Have a Happy Nutrition Month.