If you’re looking for ways to make the best out of your extra time
at home during the COVID-19 pandemic, there’s never a better time
to make healthier choices. Sure, it’s easy to get chips and other
snacks delivered to your door, but allowing yourself to start or continue
unhealthy eating habits while stuck at home can lead to weight gain, stress,
fatigue, and long-term health issues.
To avoid gaining the “Quarantine 15,” there are plenty of ways
for you and your family to eat and live better. Who knows, you may even
discover your new favorite healthy dish! To begin your journey, check
out our partner
LiveWell Frederick for useful resources on eating better, being more active, and taking care
Begin Your Healthy Eating Journey
Start out with a
personalized MyPlate plan that determines what and how much to eat within your calorie allowance.
This plan is based on your age, sex, height, weight, and level of physical
activity. It takes less than a minute to input this information and learn
how many calories you can eat per day to maintain your current weight.
For additional information, visit choosemyplate.gov.
Strive for Five
Are you getting the recommended 5 cups of fruits and vegetables per day?
Eating more fruits and veggies has been shown to
improve heart health, reduce the risk of chronic disease, and encourage overall good health.
So, what counts as a cup?
cups of salad greens: Since greens are airy, you need twice as much.
cup of 100% fruit of vegetable juice: Avoid juice that is not labeled 100% fruit or vegetable juice, which
is filled with added sugars.
1/2 cup dried fruit or veggies: Dried fruits and veggies are concentrated, so you need half as much.
- 1 cup raw, cooked, canned, or frozen fruit or veggies
- 1 cup beans, peas, or lentils
Check out some
more tips on adding more vegetables to your day.
Readily Accessible Goodness
Snack foods like cookies and chips are usually easily accessible—how
many times have you opted to tear open a bag of chips rather than coring
and slicing an apple? However, there are a few tips to increase your fruit
and veggie intake:
Buy prepared produce: If the mere thought of slicing and chopping your produce is enough to
make you opt for a microwave dinner instead, look for already-prepped
produce like bagged salads, pre-cleaned and peeled veggies, sliced fruits,
steam-in-bag veggies, and more.
Grab and Go: Keep a readily accessible bowl of fruit on the counter or cut-up veggies
in the fridge for a quick, easy snack. Taking a few minutes to prep some
produce can help you and your family opt for healthier snacking choices.
Involve the Kids:
Teach your little ones the importance of eating healthy and get them involved in food prep. Have your child help wash fruits and
veggies, use a plastic pizza cutter to cut bell peppers, or use fingers
to snap the ends off beans and asparagus. For extra fun, cut and arrange
the slices into shapes and serve with a tasty dip.
Grocery Game Plan
grocery game plan not only can help you save time at the store, it can also help you commit
to eating healthier. Get the whole family involved in planning your next
grocery list, considering breakfast, lunch, dinner, and snacks. Check out new
healthy recipes and take note of the new ingredients you’ll need.
Have your family help take an inventory of your pantry, cupboards, refrigerator,
and freezer to see what ingredients you already have.
When writing your grocery list, try to think of versatile ingredients—like
onions and potatoes— that can be used for multiple dishes so you
can buy in bulk and get the most out of your trip.
Make sure to follow health and safety guidelines while at the grocery store,
and designate one person from your household to make the trip. For tips
on cleaning your groceries during COVID-19, check out
Want more advice on eating healthier? Check out LiveWell Frederick’s
list of resources to help you and your family eat well and live well.