New Year’s resolutions come with a lot of pressure. The third Sunday of January is when most people are likely to give up on their health and fitness goals for the year. While your “official” goals may have gone out the window, see how dairy can be part of simple, everyday routines that you can use to baby step back on track to building healthy habits.
Dairy as part of an overall balanced diet to stay healthy
Eating a balanced diet with a variety of foods helps maintain a healthy immune function. A healthy, balanced meal includes a variety of foods from each food group – fruits, vegetables, dairy and other protein sources, and whole grains. Each food group contains essential nutrients. Most people don’t realize that milk is the #1 food source for calcium, vitamin D (which plays a significant role in keeping your immune system at its best!) and potassium – nutrients that many Americans, including children, are lacking in their diets. Those nutrients are there whether you drink white milk, chocolate milk, or other flavored milk. And, the protein in dairy – whey and casein – keeps you feeling full longer, provides energy to fuel your day and helps muscles recover while you sleep.
Stay well-fueled to help manage stress
Over time, continued strain on your body from stress may contribute to serious health problems such as heart disease and diabetes. It’s easier to manage stress when you’re well-fueled and feel energized, and that all starts with what you put in your mouth! Eating balanced meals and snacks with fruit, vegetables, high-fiber carbohydrates and high-quality protein like dairy foods can help you maintain your energy levels throughout the day. One of the best parts of adding dairy foods to meals is not only do you get high-quality protein, but you also get other essential nutrients like calcium and B vitamins.
Trouble sleeping? Milk can help!
With everything going on in the world, we all could use a good night’s sleep. If your mom, dad or grandma ever gave you a warm glass of milk before bed, they might have been on to something. While the warmth might have helped you relax, protein, which is found in milk among other food sources, may help you feel satisfied, too. Learn why the protein in milk may help from Amy Goodson, registered dietitian, who offers up some recipe ideas in the video below.
American Dairy Association North East is one of 16 state and regional promotion organizations working under the umbrella of the United Dairy Industry Association. It is the local affiliate of the National Dairy Council®, which has been conducting nutrition education and nutrition research programs since 1915. For more information, visit www.americandairy.com.