Yes, it Tastes Delicious

March is National Nutrition Month and a good reminder to think about how and what you eat. The best-tasting foods are salty, sugary and fatty, and all taste wonderfully good — so an occasional indulgence is going to happen.

Limiting your intake of salt, sugar and fat takes a conscious effort. Start small by making better choices and swapping out healthier choices when eating out or cooking at home.

Sodium: Nine out of 10 Americans eat more salt than they need. Eating too much salt can raise your risk of high blood pressure, heart attack and stroke. General guidelines for adult sodium intake are 2,300 mg a day. Sodium is in everything: even bread and cereals. Deli meats, canned soups, chips and almost all processed foods are big offenders. Ketchup has 160 mg per tablespoon and mustard 160 mg per teaspoon. That processed-meat hot dog with mustard and ketchup just pushed your sodium intake over the recommended daily amount.

Sugar: At a glance, bottled drink labels may state 26 grams of sugar — but look again at the serving size: It’s usually for two servings. In reality you’re consuming 52 grams of sugar when you drink the entire bottle. The recommended daily sugar intake for women is 24 grams and for men 36 grams.

Fats: Limiting saturated fat in your eating routine can help you stay healthier. By replacing saturated fats with healthier, unsaturated fats, you can help protect your heart. When cooking, use substitutions like vegetable oil instead of butter. For snacking, try nuts instead of full-fat cheese. For dinner, try leaner cuts of skinless chicken or fish instead of high-fat proteins. Dessert? Frozen yogurt vs. ice cream. Tip: Buy fat-free, plain yogurt and add your own fresh fruit.

The Medical Center can help you get back on track with FitMed, an evidence-based weight management lifestyle program that utilizes a combination of medical consultation, nutritional guidance and health coaching to deliver meaningful, lasting and effective weight loss and maintenance. Visit the FitMed page or call 305-367-2600 for more information.