Day 1: Balance your meal by following the Healthy Plate: fill 1/2 of your plate veggies, 1/4 protein and 1/4 grains.
Day 2: At snack time, try to have foods from at least 2 of the 4 food groups.
Day 3: Be sensible about how much you eat and how often!
Day 4: Try a new whole grain: whole wheat pasta, couscous, or brown rice to increase the intake of fiber in your diet.
Day 5: Avoid trans fats by reading the Nutrition Facts table and choosing foods with low or no trans fat.
Day 6: Make extra food batches and freeze it, in order to reduce cooking time, and decrease the reliability on fast foods during busy times.
Day 7: Include your family, especially children, in food preparation and clean-up; it’s an active lesson about cooperation and responsibility.
Day 8: Make ahead muffins and breakfast cookies or try a quick smoothie if you struggle to find time for breakfast.
Day 9: Judge the juice. Only reach for fruit juices that are labeled 100% fruit juice to minimize the intake of sugar.
Day 10: Try to incorporate more fish in your diet. Tool: Canada’s Food Guide recommends 2-3 servings of fish a week!
Day 11: Practice mindful eating. Eat slowly to savor your food. It takes 20 minutes for your brain to receive signals of satiety.
Day 12: Buy and support local producers by shopping at farmer’s markets.
Day 13: Take the HALT challenge when you think about eating: Hunger, Anger, Lonely, or Tired. If Hunger is not the reason, food is not the solution.
Day 14: Take the Eat Together Challenge. If you don’t routinely have meals with family, try to bring everyone together as often as possible.
Day 15: Add a special flavor to your recipes without adding fat or salt using dried herbs, spices, garlic, ginger and even lemon juice.
Day 16: Make a veggie pita pizza: whole wheat pita, variety of veggies, and mozzarella cheese. You can even freeze it for later!
Day 17: Control your food portions by leaving the serving bowls in the kitchen during a meal: Out of sight, Out of mind!
Day 18: Reduce intake of saturated fats by choosing lean cuts of meat. Search for the words: loin, skinless, round, extra-lean, and lean.
Day 19: Follow the 80/20 rule: eat healthy nutritiously 80% of the time, and indulge in your favorite snack 20% of the time.
Day 20: Take the variety challenge to explore different ingredients and maximize your nutrient intake. Tool: Dietitians of Canada Simply Great Food cookbook.
Day 21: Get your family to help organize the kitchen, meals, recipes and even the grocery shopping list.
Day 22: Discover “Let’s Make a Meal” at www.dietitians.ca/eatwell
Day 23: Make it your own! Adapt different recipes and make them your own. A personal touch makes your meals more enviable.
Day 24: Reduce sugar in any recipe by 1/3 without affecting the end product.
Day 25: Stock up on season specials! Watch out for discounts and sales on foods, and buy in big batches to cook and store.
Day 26: Scramble up some eggs + chopped veggies + cheese to serve on a whole grain bun and a glass of milk, on lazy or busy nights.
Day 27: Bake with healthier fats. Instead of butter or margarine, use canola oil; and use 75% as much.
Day 28: Keep your food safe. Use a thermometer to ensure food is prepared at optimal temperature.
Day 29: Reduce the sodium in your diet, but cutting down on processed foods, and preparing healthy, tasty meals at home.
Day 30: Grow your own veggies and fruits. If no space, seek sharing backyards or join a community garden.
Day 31: Shop wisely! Avoid grocery shopping on an empty stomach to make healthier choices.