Tips, Tools and Activities
Make a bingo card this month to help keep your family on track for meeting the recommended five to seven servings a day of fruits and veggies. Draw five columns by five rows, for a total of 25 squares. Randomly write an “F” for fruit or a “V” for veggie in all of the squares and write the word “FREE” in the middle square. Decide how you will mark off your bingo card after eating a fruit or veggie. One idea is to use the stickers placed on fresh fruit to designate a square. Another option is to color in the square after eating a fruit or veggie. Aim for a bingo every day or a “blackout” of the entire card for the week, which would represent 24 servings of fruits and veggies.
Have breakfast for dinner to shake up your evening meal. Here are a few breakfast for dinner recipe ideas:
- Veggie Omelet: Make an omelet and load it with diced veggies such as peppers, onions, tomatoes, carrots and spinach. Top with some low-fat cheese and serve with whole grain toast or potatoes.
- Breakfast Sandwich- Scramble an egg, toast a whole grain English muffin, and add some veggies (i.e. tomato, green pepper, spinach). Spread a small amount of low-fat spread on the English muffin, add the scrambled egg and top with fixings. Serve with fresh fruit on the side. A fun variation of the breakfast sandwich is a breakfast burrito.Â Instead of the English muffin, put the scrambled egg and fixings into a wheat tortilla and add a tablespoon of salsa.
A more active lifestyle will benefit everyone in the home. Lifestyle activities can vary depending on the family and their routines. Think about your day-to-day actions. Are their places and options to where a more active approach could replace a less active option? For example, does your family drive places where they could walk, bike or take public transportation Â If your family uses public transportation, get off a stop or two early and finish the trip with a brisk walk instead. Are there major blocks of the day or evening when the family is sitting at home? Could some of this time incorporate activity? Cleaning up in the evenings or after school can increase your lifestyle activity compared to sitting until dinner time. Is there a stairwell in your home, school or work? Climbing a flight or two of stairs will add a little extra activity into your day.Â
Q: We are trying to eat smaller portions. As we go through this process some of my family members are complaining that they arenâ€™t getting enough food. What are some foods that are healthier choices and will help us feel full?
A:The key is to eat foods that are more filling, but without adding A LOT of extra calories. Bulking up a meal with foods naturally full of water and fiber is helpful.Â Foods that tend to be high in water are fruits such as melons, tomatoes, strawberries and grapes, and vegetables such as lettuce, celery and squash. Add veggies to main dishes, fruit to salads and cereals, etc. Even foods that are bulked up with air such as popcorn and angel food cake will be more filling and are lower in calories than other snack foods.