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9 Dietitian Tricks for Eating Healthier

Roper St. Francis Healthcare dietitian Grace McConville, RD, LD offers nine tips that most registered dietitians use to stay healthy and keep unwanted weight off.
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With spring upon us, the active summer season (think: bathing suits) is fast approaching. And for many of us that means a focus on healthy eating and slimming down is top of mind. Here are nine tips that registered dietitians use to stay healthy and keep unwanted weight off.

  1. Ditch sugary drinks
  • Sugar sweetened beverages such as regular soda and juice are loaded with unnecessary and unwanted calories, and no nutritional value.
  • Switch out sodas (even diet, which can exacerbate your sweet tooth) for water with some added fruit or flavored seltzer waters.
  1. Don’t skip breakfast
  • Make sure to eat breakfast each morning with some type of protein, such as eggs or Greek yogurt.
  • Skipping breakfast can lead to increased hunger later in the day leading to unhealthy choices.
  1. Sneak in those greens
  • Add spinach or kale to smoothies or pasta sauces to help reach your recommended daily intake of 3 cups of vegetables per day.
  • Greens help bulk up your meals and increase nutrients without adding many calories.

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  1. Variety is your friend
  • Mix up different veggies. Experiment with something new from the farmers’ market.
  • Try adding broccoli, red peppers, mushrooms or onions to your pizza, omelet or sandwich wrap.
  1. Fix healthy snacks
  • Cut up and prepare snacks such as peppers or carrots on the weekend to have handy and ready to go for the weekdays. Enjoy them with hummus or low fat dressing.
  • Pack a tablespoon (or single-package serving) of a nut butter to eat with an apple or banana in lieu of an afternoon vending machine snack.
  1. Eat fewer processed foods
  • Highly processed foods such as chips and canned soups tend to be high in sodium.
  • Try to prepare more meals at home in order to control the ingredients that are added.
  • Skip the salt and use fresh herbs, spices and garlic to season foods.
  1. Be prepared when eating out
  • Read menus carefully for clues to fat and calorie content, avoiding items with calorie-laden terms: batter fried, buttered, crispy, breaded and creamed.
  • Opt for menu items with healthier descriptive terms: baked, braised, broiled, grilled, poached, roasted and steamed.
  • Split your order. Share a large sandwich or main course with a friend or take home half for another meal.
  1. Plan and prepare healthy meals for the week
  • Planning and prepping meals for the week on Saturday or Sunday will not only save time during the week but will also save money!
  • Rather than having to grab something last minute on a busy mid-week night, you can just heat your prepared meal in the microwave and enjoy.
  1. Increase your fiber
  • Fiber helps digestion, improves colon and digestive health and helps you feel full.
  • Choose high fiber items such as beans, whole grains, bran flakes or oatmeal.

By Grace McConville, RD, LD, a dietitcian with Roper St. Francis Healthcare

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