Tuesday, May 28, 2013

Grill the MyPlate Way

Did you have a relaxing Memorial Day weekend?  Despite the rainy weather, Memorial Day weekend is known as the season to kick off grilling and camp fires.

Hot dogs and hamburgers are known as the usual staples for grilling, but it is important to consume a variety of foods to achieve balanced meals.

Using the MyPlate™ method is a great way to ensure that one-fourth of your plate is a lean protein, one-fourth is a whole-grain and at least half your plate is filled with fruits and vegetables – in addition to one serving of low fat milk, yogurt or cheese. A simple solution for this method is to use foil packets on the grill or over a campfire, which will help you meet the MyPlate™ guidelines. All you need you need is foil and a fork.

MyPlate™ Tips

1. Consider the size of your plate. Try using a 9-inch plate as a way to reduce portion size and calories.
2. Review the food groups; what foods fit into each section?
  • Visually divide the plate or bowl in half.
  • Fill half of the plate with veggies and/or fruit.
  • Fill one-quarter of the plate with lean meat or protein.
  • Fill one-quarter of the plate with grains, including whole grains as much as possible.
  • Add one serving of low-fat milk, yogurt or cheese.

4. Focus on whole, low-fat foods:
  • fresh or frozen fruits and vegetables,
  • whole grains,
  • fresh, lean protein,
  • skim milk, cheese and nonfat yogurt.

Here are examples of how to make MyPlate™ work for you.

Family Dinner:
Whole wheat spaghetti noodles topped with meat sauce, side of leafy green salad with cherry tomatoes, glass of skim milk, broiled pineapple for dessert.
Brown Bag Lunch:
Sandwich - whole wheat bread, turkey, low-fat cheese and fresh vegetables, side of baby carrots, 2 clementines.
Quick Breakfast:
Parfait - nonfat yogurt layered with berries, granola and sliced almonds, banana on the side.

The information is not intended as medical advice. Please consult a medical professional for individual advice.

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