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CCS Clinical Corner – National Nutrition Month®

While March has been National Nutrition Month, with the theme “Fuel for the Future,” we should continue to help individuals (and ourselves) make informed food choices and develop healthy eating and physical activity habits throughout the entire year. The Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics explains, “Eating with sustainability in mind is a tasty way to nourish ourselves during every phase of life and protect the environment.”

The American Diabetes Association® (ADA) recommends the following relevant diabetes management goals to complement this year’s nutrition month theme:

  • Increase weight loss goals by up to 15% to maximize benefits.
  • Due to disorders and disruptions related to diabetes, screen for sleep health issues.
  • The updated recommendation is to encourage physical activity of 60 minutes daily for children/adolescents and 150 minutes (about two and a half hours) per week for adults. Both children and adults should spend this time in moderate to vigorous intensity activity and incorporate muscle and bone strengthening activities at least three days a week.

Additionally, the ADA and the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics recommend that people with diabetes meet with a Registered Dietitian for medical nutrition therapy (MNT). The four goals of Nutrition Therapy in ADA guidelines are:

  • Promote and support healthy eating patterns, emphasizing a variety of nutrient-dense foods in appropriate portions.
  • Address individual nutrition needs based on personal and cultural preferences, health literacy, and access to healthy foods.
  • Maintain the pleasure of eating by providing non-judgmental messages about food choices.
  • Provide practical tools for developing healthy eating patterns. These tools can be tips like the following.
    • Eat a variety of food, making half your plate fruits and vegetables.
    • Choose healthy carbohydrates, eat less fat, and cut the salt.
    • Avoid skipping meals. Focus on your food and watch portions.
      TIP: Let CCS help! Provide patients with a copy of our placemat outlining how to build a healthy meal, following the diabetes plate method.

Healthy eating for people with diabetes is healthy eating for everyone.