Eat Right Challenge is opportunity to have fun while eating healthy
By Beth Cecil
Owensboro Health HealthPark dietitian
You are probably familiar with “The Biggest Loser” and perhaps you have even heard about the “Family Fit and Trim” contest we are currently having here at the HealthPark. Contests such as these, where people compete to lose weight and get in shape, have become very popular.
Workplaces and other organizations are jumping on the bandwagon too and adopting their own versions of “biggest loser” type contests in order to promote better health and weight. After all, we know that based on much research, healthy eating, weight management and physical activity are all keys to good health and disease prevention.
I think it is great that so many people are taking on challenges such as these to improve their health, weight and overall lifestyle. I imagine that these contests are both fun and rewarding.
If you feel up for a health challenge here is something you can try on your own. Take the Great American Eat Right Challenge. As part of the American Cancer Society’s Great American Health Challenge, the Eat Right Challenge is a cancer prevention initiative that encourages Americans to adopt healthy lifestyle behaviors and eating habits in order to reduce their risk of cancer.
Visit the website www.cancer.org/greatamericans and click on nourish to view all sorts of great nutrition information. While it is not too often that I recommend going to websites for nutritional information, I found this one to be full of sound nutritional advice provided by registered dietitians. I loved what I saw on this website and wanted to share with you some of the highlights.
Once on the site, you can start by taking a kitchen tour with their virtual dietitian who will share with you great tips on restaurant eating, portion control, grocery shopping for home cooking, healthy recipes and nutrition questions and answers. In the Q & A section, learn about the role of various foods and nutrients in cancer prevention. Look up alcohol, aspartame, coffee, fish oil, meats, herbicides and pesticides, salt and anything in between.
In the “Shopping and Cooking Smart” section, you can find a healthy foods shopping list, learn innovations in home cooking and get tips on reducing calories and fat without cutting flavor in some of your favorite recipes. You can even watch a short video with their Registered Dietitian, who guides you through healthy food choices at the grocery.
Be sure to check out the section called “Take Control of Your Weight” as you can get some great tips for snacks and dashboard dining.
And find some great recipes such as Black Bean and Corn Salad, Crunchy “Oven-Fried” Chicken Nuggets, Asian Beef Salad and more along with information on how to order The Great American Eat-Right Cookbook.
Don’t leave the website until you have clicked on “Fight Cancer With Fun Videos: Eat right!”. This features a great video with author and Food Network Dietitian Ellie Krieger. She will demonstrate the preparation of a quick, easy and healthy meal while advocating the use of fruits and vegetables in all meals and snacks. Here you will also find a Portion Control Guide, Food Diary, Healthy Grilling Tips, Time Management Tips and “A Day in the Life Clock” which is a meal-by-meal guide for easy healthy meal choices each day.
Whether you enter a contest or just challenge yourself and go it alone, you can’t go wrong when you make it a point to find ways to make healthier eating, exercise and lifestyle choices. Good Luck!!