This year’s theme, Personalize Your Plate, promotes creating nutritious meals to meet individuals’ cultural and personal food preferences and needs.
Parkhurst Dietitian, Alicia, is passionate about the crossroads at which inclusivity and nutrition meet:
The nutrition and dietetics sphere is changing very rapidly and going through an incredible transformation as a whole, so I’m proud to be in the position to influence how our organization embraces and adapts to it. People are becoming more aware of how health and nutrition is so personal – there’s no one size fits all approach – and how a more modern, realistic, and inclusive approach can totally change the game. Food is meant to be enjoyed!
Alicia recommended five simple ways to embrace the 2021 theme of Personalize Your Plate, for this month and moving forward. Check them out:
- Focus on your own plate (and individual goals, needs, and lifestyle). Every human body has different nutrient needs and even those needs vary daily and throughout our lives. Choose foods that you enjoy and give you the energy your unique body’s needs.
- Explore different cultures and traditional diets. Whether it is supporting a local restaurant or attempting a new recipe, try a new cuisine to expand your palate. Not only does this offer up an opportunity to get your nutrients in a new way, it’s a window into someone else’s culinary world!
- Master “recipe templates”. Seek out basic recipe formula for items like frittatas, soups, bowls, stir-fry, etc. and use ingredient and flavor variations that you prefer. Once you master a few quality recipe templates you’ll have more confidence to explore different variations. Check out our Tuscan & Sushi Bowl Recipes as a starting place!
- Make spice blends or sauces to perk up menu basics and rotate on your favorite foods. Food is meant to be enjoyed! Do you meal prep? Then this is the perfect way to incorporate variety day-to-day or week-to-week. Being too strict in your dining routine could lead to fizzling out a favorite food. What’s that saying about “too much of a good thing”?!
- Balance and variety are key. Make sure you are giving your body enough food throughout the day and offering it variety with each plate. Clinging to certain foods just because you consider them healthy might mean you’re missing out on other nutrients – and possible new favorites!