Wondering what National Nutrition Month is? You are not alone!
Most people know it has something to do with nutrition and eating better. However, they often do not know where to begin...
Read on for the best national nutrition month events and ideas to keep the celebration going all month long!
What Is National Nutrition Month (NNM)?
National Nutrition Week was a campaign launched in 1973 to highlight healthy eating. It came with a theme, "Invest In Yourself —Buy Nutrition".
Since then, National Nutrition Week grew so quickly that it naturally became National Nutrition Month. The theme changes annually, but the message remains the same and is broken down into weekly key messaging to make goals more manageable:
• Week One: Eat a variety of nutritious foods from the various food groups
• Week Two: See a Registered Dietitian Nutritionist (RDN)
• Week Three: Plan your meals and snacks
• Week Four: Create tasty foods at home
While you don’t have to limit these initiatives to one week only, each weekly message illuminates one crucial area for making progress towards healthy eating.
How to Implement the National Nutrition Month Theme 2022
Last year's theme was "Personalize Your Plate", taking nutrition to the personal level. This year, the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics is widening horizons with the theme "Celebrate a World of Flavors".
Below provides general tips to implement the theme into common nutrition principles.
Cook & Prep
Customizing cooking and food preparation according to your individual cultural traditions can make healthy eating more successful for you. It doesn't hurt to explore other cultural methods of preparation and cooking as well.
Move your finger around a map and cook a dish from wherever your finger lands on. You may just find your new favorite plate!
Visit a Dietitian
Registered Dietitian Nutritionists (RDNs) can help you navigate nutrient content in your diet. Avoid deficiency and nurture health by diving into the details with them.
Often, a complete diet and cultural traditions of cooking and preparation can go hand in hand with some small adjustments.
Plan Out Meals
You don’t have to travel around the world to find a healthy meal. The tastes of different destinations can be made at home!
Learn what a healthful meal looks like in different cultures so you can enjoy your food choices, no matter where you are in the world.
Vary Your Diet
"Variety is the spice of life" is a common saying meaning that new experiences make life more interesting. The same is true when it comes to food!
Try and make your own seasoning blends with new herbs, garnishes, flavor combinations, spices, and so on to switch your dishes up a bit (you’ll likely be adding nutrients with each new color you add to the plate).
Meal Ideas to Celebrate National Nutrition Month
With the recent COVID-19 pandemic, it’s no wonder people are missing their globetrotting days! If you are feeling a bit stir-crazy, you aren’t alone.
Enjoy these meals from around the world while you celebrate National Nutrition Month.
Enjoy Authentic Flavor Without Excess Calories
Looking for a simple, delicious dish? Whip up homemade chicken pad thai in a matter of minutes!
Brown rice noodles mixed with lean meat and vegetables provide for a protein-packed, Asian-inspired dish.
Remix a Comfort Food Dish
Healthy versions of comfort food favorites are sure to wow a couple or a crowd! Pasta marinara is an Italian-inspired dish that can easily be made homemade and healthy.
Fresh ingredients, herbs, and spices can really make this dish delicious.
Bring a Wide World of Flavors to Your Table
Plus, there are often leftovers to enjoy for a couple of days afterward (hello, easy lunches)!
Turn Your Curiosity to New Cuisines
Middle eastern dishes are often overlooked because they can be hard to pronounce but easy to make.
Take beef shakshuka for instance, which is made of common pantry ingredients and can be created in under an hour. Combine the delicious flavors of paprika, beef, and feta cheese garnish for a new taste that will tickle your taste buds.
"Wok" Your World with a Stir-Fry
Stir-fry is a go-to recommendation for many dietitians. Why? Because it combines lean meats, a variety of veggies, and healthy oils all in one place (or pan in this case).
Nothing could be easier than throwing together a beef and broccoli stir fry on a busy, weekday night.
In Summary On National Nutrition Month
Celebrating a world of flavors for National Nutrition Month opens you up to a world of possibilities. Expand your palate and your plate with new cuisines.
The field of dietetics and nutrition is slowly becoming more diverse, so it can help to look to experts from around the world for fresh ideas and flavor combinations.
Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics. National Nutrition Month. Eat Right. Published 2022. https://www.eatright.org/food/resources/national-nutrition-month.