March is National Nutrition Month--the 13th annual nationwide campaign urging Americans to eat better, get in shape and live healthier, longer lives.
"Food . . . It Even Sounds Nutritious" is the theme for the public education effort sponsored by the nation's largest group of nutrition professionals, which is calling attention to the "crisp, refreshing, spicy, sweet, crunchy and delicious" qualities of food.
"We hope to encourage consumers to go back to the basics," says Donna R. Watson, president of the American Dietetic Assn., the 50,000-member organization sponsoring National Nutrition Month. "When people think of refreshing, we'd like them to start thinking of a tall, cool glass of milk. When they think of something sweet, what about strawberries?
Shop the Outer Aisles
"These are foods that fit those descriptions, and at the same time, they're good for you," she says. "Many Americans have come to believe that the only good-tasting foods are bad for you nutritionally."
In urging people to go back to the basics, the dietetic association suggests shopping the outer aisles of the grocery store. That's where fresh fruits and vegetables, dairy products and lean meats and fish are found.
Nutritionally wise consumers will shop the outer aisles first and then supplement grocery purchases with ready-to-eat foods--enriched breads and cereals and other grain products such as noodles and rice.
When favorite fruits and vegetables are not in season, frozen and canned products can also be nutritious choices, but check labels for sodium and sugar content.
For information on nutritious foods write to the association's Sales Order Department, 430 N. Michigan Ave., Chicago, Ill. 60611.