National Nutrition Month is a nutrition education and information campaign created annually in March by the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics.

The campaign focuses attention on the importance of making informed food choices and developing sound eating and physical activity habits.

In addition, National Nutrition Month promotes the Academy and its members to the public and the media as the most valuable and credible source of timely, scientifically based food and nutrition information.

The theme for 2017 is “Put Your Best Fork Forward,” which acts as a reminder that each bite counts. Making just small shifts in our food choices, can add up over time.

The 2015-2020 Dietary Guidelines for Americans suggest starting with small changes in order to make healthier lasting changes you can enjoy.

This year’s theme for National Nutrition Month inspires us to start with small changes in our eating habits — one forkful at a time. So whether you are planning meals to prepare at home or making selections when eating out, Put Your Best Fork Forward to help find your healthy eating style.

Every year the Academy sets goals for National Nutrition Month. This year’s goals include:

• Create an eating style that includes a variety of your favorite, healthful foods.

• Practice cooking more at home and experiment with healthier ingredients.

• How much we eat is as important as what we eat. Eat and drink the right amount for you.

• Find activities that you enjoy and be physically active most days of the week.

• Manage your weight or lower your health risks by consulting a registered dietitian nutritionist. RDNs can provide sound, easy-to-follow personalized nutrition advice to meet your lifestyle, preferences and health-related needs.

Registered Dietitian Nutritionist Day, which will be celebrated on March 8, increases awareness of registered dietitian nutritionists as the indispensable providers of food and nutrition services and recognizes RDNs for their commitment to helping people enjoy healthy lives.

Be sure to visit the Academy’s National Nutrition Month website at http://www.eatright.org during the upcoming months for new and updated resources to help make the National Nutrition Month 2017 celebration an infinite success.”

Put Your Best Fork Forward.”

The information presented in this article was adapted from the Academy of Food and Dietetics website at http://www.eatright.org/resource/food/resources/national-nutrition-month/national-nutrition-month.

Carey Stites is a certified personal trainer, group fitness instructor and a Registered Dietitian with a master’s degree in nutrition. Carey is currently the Registered Dietitian working with Wellstone in Harker Heights. Contact her at carey.stites@smchh.org.

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