By Kathleen Bayliss-Byrne,
Dietitian, CF H Svcs C (A)
Each individual person has their own unique needs based on their health, their preferences, their culture and their food traditions. Finding what may be “good for you” is not the same for everyone.
Think about the traditions you experience and share those with others near you. Enjoying foods from an array of cultures as a way to boost variety and nutrients.
The Nutritional Wellness Working Group is happy to share their “healthy” and we hope you share yours too!
Mindful eating – Cdr JJ Doyle
“During Basic Training, quickly consuming my meal just became part of eating. Afterwards I found this habit very difficult to break, sometimes my meal would be almost gone while others were just getting started. I began using my non-dominant hand to eat, I found this slowed me down, helped with digestion and saved me some embarrassment when eating in public”.
Plan ahead – Kathleen Bayliss-Byrne, P.Dt CDE
“One of the ways I find my healthy is by getting organized every week before buying groceries by planning a menu that includes all the fresh vegetables to be used in the first three to four days. This reduces food waste, which is very important to me. I also prep most of the fresh foods so they are ready to use in a recipe. I like to prepare breakfast options and lunch options on Sunday to manage my time during the work week.”
For some healthy breakfast ideas, visit www.cafconnection.ca/Halifax/Adults/Health-Wellness/Health-Promotion/Resources-Links/Core-Breakfast-Recipes.aspx
Quality over quantity – CPO2 Adam Holloway
“I find my healthy by selecting quality ingredients that I can incorporate into a healthy meal plan. I find it difficult at times to establish a solid routine when balancing a busy work schedule with my home life, sometimes causing stress levels to elevate. Time management is critical when balancing two worlds and sometimes we make unhealthy choices when time is a factor.
Five things I do for mission success:
- Create a meal plan each week (this is key to fast easy meal preparation).
- Prepare meals using whole or minimally processed food (read ingredients list).
- Choose recipes with plenty of vegetables and fruit (research calorie count).
- Eat smaller meals more often (prepare ahead of time).
- Avoid sugary beverages and drink water.
These five steps helped me introduce the nutrients I needed to maintain good mental and physical health. I have concluded that investing in yourself is key to unlocking a more productive and healthier you.”
Listen to your body – Madison Walsh MPH, P. DT
“I find my healthy by listening to my body and practicing mindful eating. I eat when I am hungry, stop when I am full, and choose a variety of foods that I enjoy eating.”
There are many apps to help cultivate mindfulness such as Am I Hungry, Mindful Bite, and In the Moment.
Make it a family activity – CPO2 Tari Lightwood
“Food might very well be the foundation of our family. We have found our kids, now 12 and 9, to have a very positive attitude towards food, likely owing to the fact that we have included them in the kitchen during meal prep since day one and we have always sat down to eat together as a family. We constantly introduce new foods and flavours and discuss what we like or don’t like about them, and we also discuss the nutritional value of what we consume. We include the kids in our weekly meal planning, food prep and cooking. Food is fuel for our bodies, certainly, but the dinner table is also the place to really hear what’s going on in each other’s lives.”
For more information and resources on managing family meals, check out www.unlockfood.ca
Do your research – Cpl Carol Chan
“I find my healthy by watching a lot of shows and videos related to food around the world, which in turn inspires me to find new ingredients to cook something fresh and exciting.”
As for recipes, I liked the recipe for Vietnamese Chicken and Rice Noodle Salad from www.cookspiration.com and the Vegetarian Chinese Egg Fried Rice from the Dieticians.ca Nutrition Month recipe e-book, found here: https://www.dietitians.ca/DietitiansOfCanada/media/Documents/Resources
Make Food Fun – Cpl Emilie LaBrie
“I find my healthy by leafing through my hilarious sassy vegan cookbook. I’m not actually vegan, but the cookbook is so entertaining that it makes finding new delicious recipes fun. So that would be my main suggestion – find a way to make it fun – but also, don’t be scared of switching it up and trying out a vegetarian or vegan recipe. I’m excited to try out a recipe for tomato and white bean soup with rosemary garlic oil – it’s going to be epic.”