What is Healthy Food?

What is Healthy Food?

By: Ashley Martinez, MFN, RDN, LD, NASM-CPT

The word “healthy” plays such a large role in our vocabulary. Whether we’re talking about a healthy mindset, healthy food, healthy environment or even healthy choices, these phrases hold a lot of meaning. But for many, the word healthy may seem ambiguous and confusing. Depending on where you’re from and what you’ve learned along the way, this term may be defined differently. As a registered dietitian nutritionist, my job is to provide more nutrition education and clarity to help you build healthy habits within your lifestyle. With that being said, the three most common questions asked around this topic are:

Is this healthy?

Is this healthy for me?

How do I stay healthy?

Let’s start with the first question, “Is this healthy?” What comes to mind for you when scanning the health value of a food? What criteria do you use to identify something as healthy? You might use the nutrition facts label as a guide, identify certain food groups from the food pyramid, determine portion sizes via MyPlate or, quite possibly, you’re not even sure what to look for!

At Kroger Health, our food philosophy states all foods fit within a healthy eating pattern. Yes, that’s right, all food can be considered healthy with respect to its portion size and your individual nutrition goals and needs. Let’s review a few key principles outlined by the Dietary Guidelines for Americans that we should consider when making healthy choices:

Make half of your plate fruits and vegetables. When building your meal, start with the core ingredients: fruits and veggies! Here are some key produce products to consider, and creative ways to use them in your meals:

Move to low-fat or fat-free dairy options. Lactose-free or fortified soy versions are also recommended.

  • Kroger® Vanilla Light Nonfat Greek Yogurt: Only 90 calories and packed with 13g of protein per serving, this yogurt is great as part of breakfast, as a mid-day snack or late-night treat to satisfy your sweet tooth.
  • Simple Truth Organic® Vanilla Soymilk: A dairy-free, high protein alternative, vanilla soymilk tastes delicious and is similar in nutrition to cow’s milk. Use it in baked goods, coffee drinks or even have a glass for a post-workout drink.

Make half of your grains whole grains. Pro tip: look for the word “whole” within the first ingredient listed. This ensures that there is less processing and more intact fiber, which is beneficial for gut health.

Vary your protein. Enjoy different types such as seafood, eggs, beans, unsalted nuts, soy products, lean meat and poultry.

More healthy eating tips

Remember to consume more nutrient-dense foods (such as mangos, dates, kale, lentils and nuts), while managing your portions with foods that contain more “empty calories” or not as much nutritional value (like soda, candy and baked goods).

Now that you have some fresh ideas for what makes a meal healthy, how do you continue to make healthier choices? The simple answer is: enjoy what you eat! Living this way makes sticking to a healthy lifestyle or diet easy.

Experiment with food, customize your choices and reach out to a registered dietitian for individual support. Not only do we work with you to create a customized plan, we also work through counseling strategies to ensure your relationship with food is always strong, so maintaining healthy eating patterns can come naturally. A healthy relationship with food is crucial for continued success!

Explore more healthy living advice from our team of experts.

Disclaimer: This information is educational only and is not meant to provide healthcare recommendations. Please see a healthcare provider.

What is Healthy Food?

What is Healthy Food?

By: Ashley Martinez, MFN, RDN, LD, NASM-CPT

The word “healthy” plays such a large role in our vocabulary. Whether we’re talking about a healthy mindset, healthy food, healthy environment or even healthy choices, these phrases hold a lot of meaning. But for many, the word healthy may seem ambiguous and confusing. Depending on where you’re from and what you’ve learned along the way, this term may be defined differently. As a registered dietitian nutritionist, my job is to provide more nutrition education and clarity to help you build healthy habits within your lifestyle. With that being said, the three most common questions asked around this topic are:

Is this healthy?

Is this healthy for me?

How do I stay healthy?

Let’s start with the first question, “Is this healthy?” What comes to mind for you when scanning the health value of a food? What criteria do you use to identify something as healthy? You might use the nutrition facts label as a guide, identify certain food groups from the food pyramid, determine portion sizes via MyPlate or, quite possibly, you’re not even sure what to look for!

At Kroger Health, our food philosophy states all foods fit within a healthy eating pattern. Yes, that’s right, all food can be considered healthy with respect to its portion size and your individual nutrition goals and needs. Let’s review a few key principles outlined by the Dietary Guidelines for Americans that we should consider when making healthy choices:

Make half of your plate fruits and vegetables. When building your meal, start with the core ingredients: fruits and veggies! Here are some key produce products to consider, and creative ways to use them in your meals:

Move to low-fat or fat-free dairy options. Lactose-free or fortified soy versions are also recommended.

  • Kroger® Vanilla Light Nonfat Greek Yogurt: Only 90 calories and packed with 13g of protein per serving, this yogurt is great as part of breakfast, as a mid-day snack or late-night treat to satisfy your sweet tooth.
  • Simple Truth Organic® Vanilla Soymilk: A dairy-free, high protein alternative, vanilla soymilk tastes delicious and is similar in nutrition to cow’s milk. Use it in baked goods, coffee drinks or even have a glass for a post-workout drink.

Make half of your grains whole grains. Pro tip: look for the word “whole” within the first ingredient listed. This ensures that there is less processing and more intact fiber, which is beneficial for gut health.

Vary your protein. Enjoy different types such as seafood, eggs, beans, unsalted nuts, soy products, lean meat and poultry.

More healthy eating tips

Remember to consume more nutrient-dense foods (such as mangos, dates, kale, lentils and nuts), while managing your portions with foods that contain more “empty calories” or not as much nutritional value (like soda, candy and baked goods).

Now that you have some fresh ideas for what makes a meal healthy, how do you continue to make healthier choices? The simple answer is: enjoy what you eat! Living this way makes sticking to a healthy lifestyle or diet easy.

Experiment with food, customize your choices and reach out to a registered dietitian for individual support. Not only do we work with you to create a customized plan, we also work through counseling strategies to ensure your relationship with food is always strong, so maintaining healthy eating patterns can come naturally. A healthy relationship with food is crucial for continued success!

Explore more healthy living advice from our team of experts.

Disclaimer: This information is educational only and is not meant to provide healthcare recommendations. Please see a healthcare provider.