Nutrition Month: Fuel Your Active Lifestyle With Better Eating Habits

March 2, 2009 Updated: March 2, 2009

Stay active. Eat like a Champion. That’s the theme of National Nutrition Month, taking place in March. Throughout the month thousands of registered dietitians across the country will be showing Canadians how easy it is to make better food choices to improve their fitness.

“Each March, Dieticians of Canada challenges Canadians to look at their eating habits and make a change for the better during Nutrition Month," said Thida Ith, registered dietitian and national spokesperson for Nutrition Month, in a news release.

A new Ipsos Reid/Dietitians of Canada survey released in support of Nutrition Month found that although seven in 10 (68 per cent) Canadians say they have changed their eating habits in the last year to improve their fitness level, 85 per cent admit their eating habits could use "some improvement."

"The results of the new Ipsos Reid survey show that Canadians are getting the message that healthy eating and physical activity go hand-in-hand. Still, there is much work to be done and dietitians can help," said Ms. Ith.

During the month dietitians will be dishing out lots of advice, including the following top three tips:

1. Forget muscle-building or weight-loss supplements; fuel your active lifestyle with real food from Canada's Food Guide. Before exercise, fuel your body with a small meal that is mostly carbohydrate with some protein and a little fat. A good example is a peanut butter sandwich on whole grain bread with a banana and a glass of water.

2. Stay hydrated throughout the day; drink water before, during and after your workout. Water is not the only beverage, however, that provides hydration—beverages like milk, soy beverages, 100 per cent juice and even tea and coffee all count. Many foods also provide some fluid especially juicy fruits like watermelon, oranges and grapes.

3. Realize that what and when you eat and drink can help you get the most from your workout. After a workout, food and fluids help your body recover. Try a handful of almonds, a glass of chocolate milk, a small bowl of whole grain cereal with milk or a whole grain pita with hummus.

The Dietitians of Canada's Nutrition Month website, www.dietitians.ca/eatwell, provides a wealth of healthy eating tips, practical food solutions, and educational tools including EatTracker, Let's Make a Meal and Recipe Analyzer. These interactive and personalized tools allow people to track daily food and activity choices, test their nutrition knowledge, plan menus, find recipes and more.

The Nutrition Month website also features two new fact sheets. One focuses on busting common myths about nutrition for active lifestyles while the other presents a series of real life scenarios that gives practical nutrition advice to help reap the benefits of physical activity.

Dietitians of Canada has also created six 30-second Nutrition Month video clips (three in English and three in French) entitled Let's go work out!, Fuel your active lifestyle, and Where to get the best healthy eating advice. To view the video clips, visit: www.newswire.ca/en/releases/mmnr/dietitians/index.html.

Dietitians of Canada represents and supports nearly 6,000 dietitians across the country and has led the National Nutrition Month campaign for more than 28 years.