I’m Julie, the new Registered Dietitian. I joined the Shorehaven team with previous experience working in behavioral health and veterans’ care. I am excited to join this team because I really like the caring environment that comes with senior living.
 
This year’s theme for National Nutrition Month is “Personalize Your Plate.” Each and every one of us is different, whether it is our body composition, the foods we like, or our goals so it is natural for the way we keep ourselves healthy to be different too. As we look forward to spring time and nicer weather, many of us also take this time to refocus on our health and nutrition.  I wanted to share with you some ways I “personalize my plate.”
• Prep foods ahead of time- When I get home from the grocery store, I cut up fresh fruits and vegetables and put them in containers so they are readily available to me and my family. This helps my family make good decisions when we open the door to the refrigerator looking for a snack.
• Buy frozen- I always keep frozen fruits and vegetables on hand. While we think fresh is best, you get no nutrition out of rotted food you throw away. Frozen fruits and veggies are picked at the peak of their ripeness (optimal nutrition) and flash frozen. There are usually no added ingredients and can be prepared in under five minutes.
• Protein doesn’t always have to be a meat option- While I am a meat eater and so is my family, we often incorporated meat free meals into our week. Some meal ideas from my kitchen include, vegetarian chili, breakfast for supper, curry with chickpeas, and peanut butter sandwiches (my girls are 1.5 and 3).
• Focus on food groups and portions rather than calories- In my house we focus on overall nutrition. I try to make sure I provide my family variety to ensure that we are getting foods from all the food groups. We do not focus on calories but rather recommended servings of each food group in appropriate portion sizes. Nutrition is about overall health and nourishment not just changing the number on the scale.