Fruits – Focus on whole fruits:
- Eat seasonally! Checking what fruits are in season in your area can help save money.
- Craving something sweet? Try dried fruits like cranberries, mango, apricots, cherries, or raisins.
- To meet your fruit goal—keep fresh fruit rinsed and where you can see it. Reach for a piece when you need a snack.
Vegetables – Vary your veggies:
- Vary your veggies by adding a new vegetable to a different meal each day.
- Add color to salads with baby carrots, shredded red cabbage, or green beans. Include seasonal veggies for variety throughout the year.
- Vegetables go well with a dip or dressing. Try a low-fat dip or hummus with raw broccoli, red and yellow peppers, sugar snap peas, celery, cherry tomatoes or cauliflower.
Grains – Make half your grains whole grains:
- Popcorn is a whole grain! Pop a bag of low-fat or fat-free popcorn for a healthier snack.
- Whole grain pasta is great in baked dishes or pasta salad. If you choose refined grain pasta, make sure it’s enriched by checking the ingredient list.
- Ready-to-eat, wholegrain cereal is a tasty breakfast option or can be enjoyed as a whole grain snack.
Protein Foods – Vary your protein routine:
- Make dinner once and serve it twice. Roast a larger cut of lean meat. Make a second meal using the ‘planned-over’ meat.
- For car trips, pack a mixture of unsalted nuts, seeds and dried fruit for a crunchy, protein-packed snack.
- Keep seafood on hand. Seafood, such as canned salmon, tuna, or crab and frozen fish is quick and easy to prepare.
Dairy – Move to low-fat or fat-free milk or yogurt:
- Make a smoothie by blending fat-free milk or yogurt with fresh or frozen fruit. Try bananas, peaches, or mixed berries.
- For breakfast try low-fat or fat-free yogurt. Mix in cereal or fruit for extra flavor, texture and nutrients.
- Adding 8 oz. of low-fat or fat-free milk to your meal is one of the easiest ways to get dairy.
Limits – Drink and eat less sodium, saturated fats and added sugars:
- Many processed foods contain high amounts of sodium. Choose fresh vegetables, meats, poultry, and seafood when possible.
- Using spices or herbs, such as dill, chili powder, paprika, or cumin, and lemon or lime juice, can add flavor without adding salt.
- Keep it lean and flavorful. Try grilling, broiling, roasting, or baking—they don’t add extra fat.
- Simple substitutions can help you stay within your saturated fat limit. Try using nonfat yogurt when you make tuna or chicken salad.
- Split the sweet treats and share with a family member or friend.
- Cut calories by drinking water or unsweetened beverages. Soda, energy drinks, and sports drinks are a major source of added sugars.