Making nutritious choices

Get the nutrition your body needs each day. Aim for eating from each of these food groups:

  • Vegetables and fruits — Eat a rainbow of colors!
    Benefit: Helps reduce risk of heart disease, certain types of cancer and obesity
  • Whole grains
    Benefit: Helps reduce risk of type 2 diabetes and can help maintain or lower body weight
  • Dairy products
    Benefit: Helps reduce risk of osteoporosis and can lower blood pressure
  • Lean proteins like fish, poultry, beans and nuts
    Benefit: Helps with the formation of red blood cells and builds muscle

To get a better idea of how much you should eat, visit www.choosemyplate.gov.* They have online tools to help you plan affordable meals and learn about the best foods from each food group. Remember — balance is important when it comes to healthy eating.

Shopping tips

Don’t shop when hungry, because it’s too tempting to make poor food choices. Check out these shopping tips:

  • Some of the healthiest foods don’t have labels.
  • The perimeter of the store is where you’ll find less processed foods — try to avoid the middle of the grocery store, if possible.
  • If you buy produce that’s in season, you’ll get the best flavor and price.
  • Think healthy swaps, like hummus instead of dressing for dipping vegetables, or veggie wraps instead of bread for lunches.
  • Consider choosing a different food if “sugar” is listed as one of the first three ingredients.

True or false

True   False Some ingredients can go by many names.

True. You might be surprised just how many names one ingredient can have.

True   False A healthy eating plan limits foods high in added sugar and sodium and ones that contain trans fats.

True. Some examples of foods to limit are:

  • Soda and candy. They contain added sugar.
  • Lunch meats, breads, canned soups. They have added sodium.
  • Trans fats. They can be hiding in microwave popcorn, crackers and biscuits.

True   False Fruit juice is a great way to get a serving of fruit.

False. While you can get nutrients from fruit juice, it’s better to eat the whole fruit. The whole fruit contains fiber, which is good for your heart and will help you feel full. Adults should drink no more than 1 cup of juice per day, and kids age 4-6 should drink no more than half a cup per day.

Making just one better choice each day will help you feel empowered to live a healthier life. We’re here to support you all the way!

 

*Choose My Plate is an independent organization that offers health information you may find helpful. This link leads to a third-party website. Those companies are solely responsible for the privacy policies and content on their sites.

 

Dr. Imtiaz Khan

Dr. Imtiaz Khan is currently the Medical Director for Healthy Blue℠, BlueChoice HealthPlan of SC. Dr. Khan received his medical degree from Kansas City University of Medicine and Biosciences and completed his postgraduate work at the Greenville Hospital System in Greenville, SC. He is board-certified by the American Board of Family Medicine and is a member of the American Academy of Family Physicians.

Healthy Blue℠ is a sponsor of Letsgosc.org and the official Managed Care Organization of the website. 

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