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Put Your Best Fork Forward During March, National Nutrition Month

Do you make every bite count? Try these tips to add more nutrition to your day.
Put Your Best Fork Forward During March, National Nutrition Month

Graphic used with permission from

Do you include a variety of vegetables on your plate?

Plan meals to include different vegetable groups throughout the week: Dark green, red and orange, beans and peas, and starchy vegetables. Stir chopped spinach into scrambled eggs or soup. Roast carrots for an easy side dish. Add black beans to a bagged salad for a quick meal.

Do you choose naturally sweet fruit for snacks and salads or include them in main dishes?

Top your morning toast or cereal with sliced or chopped fruit. Make your own flavored yogurt by mixing fresh or frozen fruit into plain yogurt.

Do you make half of your grains whole grains?

Check food labels on bread or cereal boxes to see if the first ingredient is whole grain, such as whole wheat or whole-grain oats. Cut your favorite snack mix with a whole grain, such as popcorn. If new to whole-grain pasta, try it with flavorful sauces to help you get used to the change.

Do you mix up your choices in the protein group?

Families spend the largest percentage of their food budget on meat, poultry and seafood, according to a recent report. Replace half (or all) of the meat in a recipe with beans or legumes for a healthful way to save money. Try lentils in burgers, white beans in lasagna or spaghetti, or black beans in burritos.

Do you choose low- and fat-free dairy items to get the most nutrition for your calories?

Make a dip for raw veggies or whole-grain crackers from low-fat plain yogurt and taco or ranch seasoning.

Put your best fork forward by choosing a variety of healthful foods this month and beyond. Visit for recipes and more tips.

Julie Garden-Robinson, Food and Nutrition Specialist, NDSU Extension Service

Featured in Food Wise March 2017 newsletter (PDF)

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