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National Nutrition Month encourages eating right

Eat right

By Toi Degree

Rowan Cooperative Extension

March is National Nutrition Month. The Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics celebrates this annually. As part of their campaign, the public is invited to focus on the importance of making informed food choices and developing sound eating and physical activity habits.

National Nutrition Month 2020 is themed “Eat Right, Bite by Bite” and the overall message is that quality nutrition isn’t restrictive, but that small changes to diet can have a cumulative effect on health over time. Every healthy nutritional choice is a choice in the right direction.

This year’s theme, “Eat Right, Bite by Bite,” promotes eating a variety of nutritious foods every day, planning and creating healthful meals each week and the value of consulting a registered dietitian nutritionist. The role of a registered dietitian nutritionist is to assist their clients in developing individual eating and activity plans with simple steps that can help them meet their health goals.

Registered dietitian nutritionists work with each client to provide customized recipe ideas, cooking tips and other healthful advice for everyday issues such as cooking dinner or meal preparation for picky eaters. In addition, many registered dietitian nutritionists provide medical nutrition therapy to help clients manage chronic conditions such as diabetes, heart disease and hypertension. They may also work as part of a medical team to help clients set nutrition goals to improve their health.

Medical nutrition therapy provided by a registered dietitian nutritionist includes reviewing the client’s eating habits and lifestyle, assessing their nutritional status and creating a personalized nutrition treatment plan. Many medical plans cover the costs of seeing a registered dietitian nutritionist.

To find a registered dietitian nutritionist near you, use the academy’s online Find an Expert service at: https://www.eatright.org/find-an-expert

As part of National Nutrition Month, the academy’s website will host resources to spread the message of good nutrition and the importance of an overall healthy lifestyle for people of all ages, genders and backgrounds. The public also can follow National Nutrition Month on the academy’s social media channels including Facebook and Twitter, using #NationalNutritionMonth.

Representing more than 100,000 credentialed practitioners, the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics is the world’s largest organization of food and nutrition professionals. The academy is committed to improving the nation’s health and advancing the profession of dietetics through research, education and advocacy. Visit the academy at www.eatright.org

Toi N. Degree is family and consumer education agent with North Carolina Cooperative Extension. Call 704-216-8970 or email at toi_degree@ncsu.edu.

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