Affiliated Organizations
  HN Medical Partners   School of Nursing   HNH Fitness   Villa Marie Claire   Simulation Learning   Haiti Health Promise
Medical Partners Offices
Cardiovascular Specialists University Orthopaedic Pulmonary Specialists Obstetrics & Gynecology North Jersey Heart North Jersey Surgical Surgical Specialistss Primary Care Specialty Assoc. Urologic Specialties Women's Health Care

The new year is here, an excellent time to commit to eating healthier and adding more nutrition to your diet. "It's important to take a good look at what you're eating to not only improve your overall health but also to feel better," says Debbie Bessen, MS, RD, CSO, a registered dietitian and Holy Name's Nutrition Outreach Manager.

Bessen offers these tips to start the new year off with healthy eating:

  • Limiting red meat (beef, pork, lamb) to once a week. More than 18 ounces a week of red meat may increase your cancer risk.
  • Enjoying fatty fish (salmon, halibut, cod, tuna), a good source of omega-3, two to three times per week. Limit tuna and swordfish, which contain high levels of mercury, to once or twice a week.
  • Fitting in one-half cup or one whole piece of fruit two to three times a day.
  • Eating one-half cup of cooked or raw non-starchy vegetables three times each day.

Bessen also suggests making easy swaps from processed foods – which usually contain preservatives, excess sugar and fats, unhealthy additives, and artificial coloring – to healthy non-processed, natural foods. Common processed foods are frozen or microwaveable dinners, crackers, chips, deli meats, jarred pasta sauce, salad dressing, cake mixes, canned tomatoes, and boxed cereals. Here are some easy swaps:

Processed Non-Processed
Instant oatmealRolled oats that can be microwaved easily
Flavored yogurtPlain yogurt with honey or fresh fruit added
Canned vegetablesFresh or frozen vegetables
Minute riceFrozen brown rice
Canned soupsHomemade soup in a slow cooker

"Check your supermarkets, read the food labels, and check the ingredients list as well," says Bessen, who specializes in oncology, food sensitivities, gastrointestinal health, and weight control. "When in doubt, look for a short list of ingredients, which you can mostly identify."

For one-to-one nutrition counseling, see holyname.org/nutrition or call 201-227-6040