Whenever health professionals ask clients to make lifestyle changes the recommendations are often presented as a challenge. I truly believe that if we just changed the wording to “take this opportunity to improve your health”, the whole idea of a lifestyle change would become a much more appealing. Don’t get me wrong, I like a good challenge as much as the next person but given the choice I am more inclined to take advantage of an “opportunity” over taking on a”challenge”.
So in that spirit I am introducing the EWS Nutrition Month Opportunity. In the United States March is designated National Nutrition Month with the goal of promoting a particular good nutrition habit, like eating a colorful diet. SO I decided to present my own Shanghai Nutrition Month promotion to any readers I might have out there.
Starting with this week, I offer you the opportunity to add one new fruit and/or vegetable to your current diet every week of March. I will have suggestions of seasonal fruits and vegetables and, if you are lucky, I might even have a recipe to introduce the new food item.
I am going to focus on introducing new fruits and vegetables because, frankly, every study or piece of professional nutrition advice seems to end with “eat more colorful fruits and vegetables”. Boring as that is, the advice is well worth trying. See last week’s blog.
For this first week of March take the “opportunity” to try either one or both of the following seasonal foods available at your local Shanghai wet market.
Leeks: Turns out March is a good month for leeks. To get a good one look for a firm , straight vegetable with dark green leaves and a bright , white neck. There is much to recommend leeks from a health standpoint. Leeks are rich in many vitamins and minerals especially Vitamin A and Vitamin K ( necessary for proper blood clotting). They are also a fabulous source of folate, iron and calcium, three nutrients that are vital to women of all ages but especially to those of child bearing age. And if that isn’t enough, add a good source of Omega-3’s to the list.
Potato-Leek Soup, Leek and Beef Stew, Aspargus and Leek Frittata are three easy ways to sample leeks this week.
Kumquats: Tired of eating bananas to get your daily dose of potassium. Kumquats are a good source of this mineral that is vital for keeping your blood pressure steady. Pop one of these tiny treats in your mouth , skin and all, for a yummy new taste sensation.
WHS Challenge 2013: If you are still looking for a Challenge, check out the annual World Health Store Challenge ( another excellent opportunity). The WHS 12 week challenge is a group effort helping all participants to a healthier body through better eating and exercisng habits. To learn how to take advantage of this opportunity click on www.whschallenge.com today!
Eat Well, Live Well, Have Fun!