ACT Now! eat to be healthy

Nutritious food is key to feeling healthy and energetic. But eating well doesn’t have to be difficult or boring! Here are some simple habits you can start TODAY to feel better and control blood sugar.

Blood sugar is directly affected by what you eat, so eating a variety of nutritious foods at regular times helps to control it. Pick one or two of the simple tips below to get started:

  • Start the day with breakfast
    • focus breakfast on protein–eggs, milk, yogurt, low-fat cheese, lean meats
    • keep carbs (100% whole wheat English muffins, high fiber cereals, etc.) the side rather than the core of a meal
  • Switch out your snacks
    • choose a hand-full of nuts instead of that pack of crackers or chocolate
    • grab an apple or other fresh fruit when you crave something sweet
  • Stop drinking your calories
    • switch out soda, sweet tea and fruit juice for water (it’s cheaper too!)
    • try a squeeze of lemon or lime or a small splash of juice to flavor water
  • Reduce portion sizes
    • eat from smaller bowls and plates
    • drink a glass of water before you sit down to eat a meal
  • Make fruits and vegetables half of your plate
    • focus on meals with lots of grilled or roasted veggies
    • experiment with hearty main-dish salads (including grilled chicken and fish, nuts, seeds, beans, eggs, fruit, low-fat cheeses, etc.)
  • Cut down on foods high in saturated fats
    • choose grilled instead of deep fried meats and vegetables
    • replace beef with fish or chicken in recipes
    • add one (more) meat-free meal per week
  • Shift your grains from white (refined) to brown (whole grain)
    • replace white rice with brown rice
    • choose 100% whole grain breads and pastas instead of white
  • Make sweets a “special” treat
    • only eat homemade sweets (not packaged, sore-bought candy and cakes)
    • designate one or two meals a week for a special dessert

These diet changes help people to manage high blood pressure and high cholesterol as well as reduce the risk of heart disease and stroke.

You don’t need special foods, and your meals don’t need to be complicated or bland! Nutritious food can be delicious food!