JACKSON, Miss. (WLBT) - March is National Nutrition Month, and registered dietitians invite you to learn more about healthful eating for you and your family.
There is no one size fits all approach to fitness and health.
That is why this year’s theme is “Personalize Your Plate.”
We’re all different, and many factors shape our food choices, like taste and our Southern culture and family traditions.
You don’t have to give up all your personal food preferences to improve your health.
Eating the MyPlate way, based on the 2020 Dietary guidelines, can help you build a balanced plate with your favorite foods in mind.
At every main meal, aim to fill half your plate with fruits and vegetables, allowing for a serving of lean protein, such as chicken, fish, seafood, beans, or nuts/seeds, and whole grains like brown rice, whole wheat bread, or pasta.
Don’t forget the dairy; Milk, cheese, and yogurt provide high-quality protein and three nutrients lacking in American diets - calcium, vitamin D, and potassium.
Most often, all it takes is a few tweaks to your current plate to boost a meal’s wholesomeness.
Registered Dietitian Rebecca Turner took Today at 11′s team’s most favorite foods and transformed them into more nutritious versions.
Barbie, Symphonie and Wilson: Sweets!
At least 70 percent cocoa, dark chocolate is high in flavonoids associated with a lower heart disease risk.
You can enjoy 1 to 2 ounces a day to reap the heart benefits.
Keep dark chocolate nibs in your pantry to add to oatmeal, yogurt, muffins, pancakes, or trail mixes.
With any dessert, portion control matters more than trying to substitute all the calories away.
Chocolate Strawberry Yogurt Parfait - crunchy chocolate granola, creamy yogurt, and a fresh, sweet-tart strawberry sauce. Perfect for breakfast or dessert. Don’t forget that yogurt provides high-quality protein and three nutrients lacking in American diets - calcium, vitamin D, and potassium.
Ingredients per layer
¼ cup Chocolate Granola*
1 Tbsp. Dark chocolate chips
⅓ cup Strawberries
1 Tbsp. Strawberry Puree*
¼ cup Yogurt: plain, Greek, or vanilla Greek
- Layer in the granola and chocolate chips, sliced strawberries, strawberry puree, then yogurt, and repeat layered ingredients till you’ve reached the desired amount.
- Best assembled shortly before eating so the granola stays crunchy.
*You can use your favorite granola and add in dark chocolate chips, and look for the strawberry puree in the baking section of the grocery store. It is what you use to make pies.
With ice-cream or any dessert, portion control matters more than trying to substitute all the calories away. Create a cake in a mug for a perfectly portioned, quick-to-make, sweet treat.
Microwave Mug Cake
● 2 tbsp. self-rising flour
● 1 1/2 tbsp. no-calorie sweetener (or table sugar)
● 2 tsp. cocoa powder
● Pinch of salt
● 2 tbsp. milk
● 1 tsp. oil
● 1 drop of vanilla extract
● 1 tbsp dark chocolate nibs
- Combine the flour, sweetener, cocoa powder, and salt in the mug. Whisk gently until no lumps remain. *If you don’t have self-rising flour, use all-purpose flour + ⅛ baking powder.
- Stir in the milk, olive oil, and vanilla until smooth.
- Pop in the microwave on high for 30-35 seconds. Don’t overcook! The cake will continue to cook as it sets and cools.
- Cool 3-5 minutes.
Patrick: Charcuterie Board
A charcuterie board can be an easy, no-cook spread of healthy foods for your next casual gathering or simply to snack on!
Remember the three c’s to a great charcuterie board: Crunch, chew, and CHEESE!
A variety of cheese will please all people. You can do soft cheese like brie, a sharp cheese like cheddar, and a manchego or gouda!
If you’re lactose intolerant, personalize your plate by choosing aged cheeses, like cheddar or Parmesan, which contain almost no lactose.
Typically you would chew on deli meats or sausages, higher in sodium or saturated fats.
You can switch that to chew on hand-carved poultry or boiled eggs. Switch out dried fruits for in-season whole fruits like strawberries, grapes, and pears, plums or peaches.
Add a healthy crunch to your charcuterie board with pretzels, vegetables, and whole-grain crackers. Pair those with a dip like hummus, or ranch yogurt dressing. Replacing nuts and olives with vegetables help keep the crunch without piling in the calories from fat.
Cheryl: Kettle Chips
Homemade Potato Chips
A microwave is all you need for a better for you chip. No oil, and no baking and they offer the taste of kettle chips.
● 1 large russet potato
● pinch salt (I prefer popcorn salt for these as it’s an ultra-fine grain)
- Peel the potato & then use a mandolin or sharp knife to cut it into thin slices.
- Place the slices in a bowl of water to keep them from browning while you work.
- Place a piece of parchment paper on a glass/ceramic microwave-safe plate.
- Spread out potato slices on parchment in a single layer.
- Sprinkle with salt if desired & microwave on high for 3-7 minutes. (this depends on your microwave & thickness of your slices)
- They are done when crisp & slightly golden. Use caution when removing the plate. It will be VERY HOT.