Written by VCH Public Health Dietitians Nicole Spencer and Vanessa Lam
Eat meals with others. It sounds simple but with the busyness of balancing work, life and family, it can be hard to make it happen. The new Canada Food Guide now goes beyond "what to eat" to focusing on "how to eat" with these four ideas in mind:
- Take time to eat
- Notice when you are hungry or full
- Plan what you eat
- Involve others in planning and preparing meals
- Culture and traditions can be a part of healthy eating
- Put away distractions like the TV or electronics
It can be a lot of pressure to put food on the table for your family every day.
Start with small steps and do what you can. Even planning a day ahead, picking one meal or one time to be together in the week, can make all the difference.
Sometimes conversations in the kitchen can be the most rewarding. You may be surprised at how much young children can do in the kitchen and how even teenagers can get excited to help out. Check out these 10 tips to get your kids in the kitchen and see if there's an idea that sparks inspiration. Whatever your skill level, there are ideas for every stage from toddlers to teens!
Trying new recipes is a great way to change up your routine. For easy recipe ideas and additional tips on meal planning, or to submit your own community recipe, check out www.bettertogetherbc.ca.
The food guide continues to encourage a wide variety of foods. The new protein foods section includes the former milk and alternatives and meat and alternatives groups and encourages choices of plant-based foods more often. The food guide also now offers a mobile-responsive website to provide easy online access to recipes, videos, and actionable advice for individuals and families.
If you have any specific questions about your nutrition, you can contact HealthLinkBC at 8-1-1 to speak to a registered dietitian or email a HealthLinkBC dietitian.