General News

Eat This, Not That

Posted on Sep 02, 2016

In honor of Childhood Obesity Awareness Month, this September take a pledge with your family to make healthier, more nutritious choices every day.

Enjoying a well-balanced diet is a good idea to meet nutritional needs, just remember to be mindful of what foods are selected. Some foods have more saturated fat, added sugar and salt than others, so when we have a choice, choosing the foods with smaller amounts of those ingredients is better for our heart, brain and body.

Changing the way a certain food is prepared can be more beneficial for health by decreasing calories and fat. For example:

  • Choose whole-grain pasta and top with a vegetable-based sauce, such as marinara.
  • Have chicken and fish grilled or baked instead of fried.
  • Switch a sugary dessert for fresh seasonal fruit.
  • Buy nonfat or low fat milk, yogurt and other dairy products.
  • When making or ordering a salad, choose vinaigrette dressings and skip high-calorie add-ons like bacon and cheese.

The key to making any change is to take things one step at a time. Small, gradual changes are more likely to result in lasting lifestyle changes than making radical alterations. Choose one item to focus on, such as drinking more water, and gradually work toward your goal. Once you have accomplished that goal, add in another item.

Get started with some of these easy switches suggested by our Fit4Allkids experts:

Choose More Often                                     Choose Less Often

Grilled Chicken                                                        Fried Chicken

Lean beef or pork                                                    Ground chuck

Baked, grilled or broiled fish/seafood                      Fried seafood or fish

Nonfat milk and dairy                                               Milkshakes

Fresh fruit                                                                 Fruit snacks

Fresh veggie and hummus                                      Chips and dip

Fruit infused water                                                   Fruit juice

Low-fat yogurt and fresh fruit                                   Ice cream sundae with candy

Unsweetened flavored sparkling water                    Soda

Roasted veggies                                                      Mashed potatoes

Baked sweet potato wedges                                    French fries

Pasta with marinara sauce                                      Pasta with Alfredo sauce

Oil & vinegar salad dressings                                  Creamy, cheesy salad dressings

It is OK to enjoy an occasional treat — just be sure to watch your portion sizes, choose healthy options the majority of the time and incorporate an hour of active play into your family’s daily schedule. 

News and Articles from Johns Hopkins All Childrens Hospital RSS 2.0

Related Articles

More Articles