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Nutrition 101: Spring Clean Your Health

March 28, 2019

With the winter blues behind us (hopefully!), it’s time to come out of hibernation and revisit our healthy lifestyle plans.  Oftentimes, our enthusiasm for exercising and healthy eating dwindles in the colder weather months.  However, spring is here, and there is no better time to refresh, renew and re-evaluate our get-healthy regimes.

Here are a few ideas to get your healthy spring cleaning underway and make sure you feel fit and fabulous in time for summer.

  • Dust off the fruit bowl and make sure it’s full of fresh spring fruits for snacking.  Strawberries, blueberries, melons, papaya, and pineapple are in season for spring.

  • Why not try using spring to start a new way of shopping and meal preparation?  Set aside 30 minutes at the beginning of the week to plan your meals and write out a shopping list.  This will help you avoid temptations at the grocery store as well as reduce your daily stress with what you are going to prepare for dinner each evening.

  • Cleaning, clearing and reorganizing are effective ways to get you into new, positive routines.  So, clear out your pantry of packages past their use-by dates and stock up on plenty of fresh items including whole grains, fresh fruits and vegetables and smart snacks such as nuts.

  • While you’re cleaning out the pantry, re-assess your tableware.  Look at the size of the plates, bowls and drinking glasses that you use on a daily basis.  Consider using narrow drinking glasses, smaller side plates and shallower bowls to help manage your portion sizes.

With a balanced eating plan, exercise is important both for losing weight and maintaining your overall health. The 2018 Physical Activity Guidelines for Americans recommend adults engage in a minimum of 2½ hours each week of moderate-intensity aerobic activity or 75 minutes of vigorous-intensity activity a week.  With planning, you can easily fit 30 to 60 minutes of aerobic activity into your routine most days of the week

Examples of moderate-intensity aerobic activities:

  • Walking (about 3½ miles per hour)

  • Water aerobics

  • Bicycling (less than 10 mph)

  • Tennis (doubles)

  • Dancing

Examples of vigorous-intensity activities:

  • Race-walking (4½ mph)

  • Jogging, running (5 mph)

  • Swimming laps

  • Bicycling (faster than 10 mph)

  • Tennis (singles)

  • Aerobics

To find out more information on how to eat healthily, contact your UnityPoint Health – Marshalltown Dietitians at (641) 854-7530 or MT_dietitians@unitypoint.org. Find out more information about UnityPoint Health – Marshalltown’s Outpatient nutrition services at: https://marshalltown.unitypoint.org/media/cms/Dietitian_Services_C888AAD436DEF.pdf

 

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