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Eating Healthy on the Run: 5 Tips for Getting More Nutrition in Your Daily Bites


by Deb McLeod

When you are busy and always pressed for time, eating healthfully can easily lose its luster as a high priority item.

Oh, it's a high priority in your mind. Each day you might make promises to eat better, to get the right mix of vegetable and to get enough protein and fiber. But that can take time and you don't have the time to slice and dice each day. Life simply gets in the way.

But there are easy ways to get more nutrition into your daily food intake. We offer an easy five.

1. Think color.

With each food choice you make, think about color. Your bagel has little to no color, but adding some spinach or even hummus adds some color. When you order your sandwich, make sure that when it's complete, it's colorful.

Adding color adds nutrition. It's as simple as that. The healthiest foods in the world - from peppers and strawberries to oranges and salmon - are colorful food. Not only will you benefit your body by adding more color to your diet, you will also benefit your psyche. Researchers say that when we choose and eat more colorful food, we enjoy eating more and feel better about our choices when we're done eating.

2. Think about what you drink.

It might not seem that in the realm of healthy eating, you should have to worry too much about what you drink. But paying attention to your daily beverages is an easy and quick way to add more solid nutrition to your day. Swap your second cup of coffee for a cup of black tea, which is packed with antioxidants (coffee, by the way, is also good for you in moderation).

Instead of soda for lunch, consider having iced tea, or even 100% juice (especially one of the nutrient-packed versions like pomegranate juice or acai juice). You might drink a chai tea with soy milk, or have a glass of tomato juice. You can add a simple bit of nutrition without any sacrifice.

3. Get enhanced.

That is, take advantage of the myriad of products available these days that are enhanced with extra Omegas, additional calcium and Vitamin C (a powerful antioxidant and anti aging nutrient) and protein. You can eat the same foods you normally eat, but get additional benefit from them. One brand of bagels, for example, offers additional protein -- up to 11 grams in one bagel. You can now buy eggs that are enhanced with additional Omegas, and even items like crackers and cereals that are enhanced with any number of beneficial ingredients.

4. Cut sugar.

We know, we know. You've heard it before and you know you'll hear it again. Perhaps you're tired of hearing it, but the reality is this: sugar is harmful in a myriad of ways. It's harmful to your skin, so you look older faster, and it's harmful to your body, causing energy spikes and then huge crashes.

Most of all, however, sugar is detrimental because it fills you up (at least temporarily) and then reduces the likelihood you'll get the right amount of nutrients in the rest of your diet.

When you're busy, however, and life takes you into restaurants and fast foods joints, it can be hard to watch that sugar. Keep it simple. Avoid ketchup, for example, or stay away from the maple glazed pork chops and choose a strip steak with butter. Think of fruit for dessert instead of sugar-packed cakes and brownies.

5. Make good choices when eating out.

Easier said than done, we know. When you eat out, you want to treat yourself and it's easy to say, "Well, I'm eating out now, and I'll treat myself. But I'll do better tomorrow." If you're busy, though, you likely eat out with some regularity, so you are "treating" yourself more often than not. We're not going to fill your head with orders that you only get the spinach salad or the veggie burger, but we are going to suggest that you take an opportunity even when eating out to make good choices.

Even if it's fast food, you can choose a baked potato and a salad, or fruit as a side instead of fries.

If you always have healthy eating on your personal radar, you'll soon see that ramping up the nutrition isn't too difficult.

Categories: Food & Recipes, Health & Wellness, MomShare, Newsletter, Women's Health,

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