May 20, 2024

Fuel for the Future is the theme for National Nutrition Month 2023. The Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics at

offers helpful eating hints and recipes.

“Food is the fuel that keeps your body running smoothly throughout your life, so give it the nutrients it needs to meet each life stage,” says registered dietitian nutritionist Amy Bragagnini, a national Academy Spokesperson based in Grand Rapids, Michigan.

“Eat with the environment in mind by enjoying more plant-based meals. Buy foods in season and shop locally when possible. Start a garden.”

“Plan your meals and snacks to stay nourished and save money. Check your pantry before buying more food, use a grocery list while shopping and shop the sales. Educate yourself about community resources and governmental programs such as the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program, the Special Supplemental Nutrition Program for Women, Infants and Children and local food banks.” For more information on local food programs see Crow Wing Energized Website at


“Eat a variety of foods from all food groups whether fresh, frozen, canned or dried.

Include your favorite cultural foods and traditions in your meals. Avoid fad diets that promote unnecessary restrictions and practice self-love.”


“Learn how to make tasty foods at home with new flavors and foods from around the world. Find creative ways to use leftovers instead of throwing them away. Create happy memories by eating with friends and family when possible.”

You are challenged this month to try a new food or recipe. Consider fruits such as dried fig, blood orange; vegetables — tofu, bok choy, rutabaga. Almond butter, chia seeds, hummus, whole wheat pita bread, Greek yogurt are snack ideas. Two entree recipes provided today are found at

. is an interactive website containing activities, recipes and food ideas for all ages. If you have a specific nutritional need or problem, ask your health care provider for a referral to a registered dietitian.

Tofu with broccoli

Tofu with broccoli is served with brown rice.



1 pound firm tofu

4 teaspoons vegetable oil

2 cloves garlic (peeled and minced)

2 scallions (green and whites chopped)

1 head broccoli (broken into florets, stems chopped)

1/4 cup water

1 tablespoon low-sodium soy sauce

1/2 teaspoon Crushed red pepper flakes

1 tablespoon Chopped fresh cilantro (or basil leave)


Put the tofu on a cutting board and cut it in half and then cut each half into four equal pieces.

1. Put two layers of paper towel on a cutting board and put the tofu on top. Let drain at least 20 minutes (and up to two hours).

2. Place a skillet over medium heat and when hot, add 2 teaspoons oil. Add the tofu, one piece at a time, and cook until golden, about three minutes per side. Remove the tofu to a plate and set aside.

3. Reheat the skillet and when it is hot, add remaining 2 teaspoons oil. Add garlic and scallions and cook until just golden, about two minutes. Add the broccoli and water and raise the heat to high. Cook until the broccoli is tender, about four minutes.

4. Return the tofu to the pan and add the remaining ingredients. Stir well.

5. Serve with a side of brown rice.

Nutrition facts: Makes four servings, each serving is 151 calories, 10 grams Fat, 8 grams

carbohydrate, 12 grams protein, 173 mg sodium

Bean and rice burritos in a pan

Bean and rice burritos include flour tortillas and are baked in the oven for 15 minutes.



2 cups rice (cooked)

1 onion (small, chopped)

2 cups kidney beans (cooked, or one 15 ounce can, drained)

8 flour tortillas (10 inch)

1/2 cup salsa

1/2 cup cheese (shredded)


1. Preheat the oven to 300 degrees.

2. Peel the onion and chop it into small pieces.

3. Drain the liquid from the cooked (or canned) kidney beans.

4. Mix the rice, chopped onion, and beans in a bowl.

5. Put each tortilla on a flat surface.

6. Put 1/2 cup of the rice and bean mix in the middle of each tortilla.

7. Fold the sides of the tortilla to hold the rice and beans.

8. Put each filled tortilla (burrito) in the baking pan.

9. Bake for 15 minutes.

10. While the burritos are baking, grate 1/2 cup cheese.

11. Pour the salsa over the baked burritos. Add cheese.

12. Serve the burritos warm.

Nutrition facts: Makes eight servings. Each serving is 358 calories, 8 grams fat, 58 grams carbohydrate, 13 grams protein, 557 mg sodium

Crow Wing Energized is a grassroots movement dedicated to improving the health and wellness of Crow Wing County residents through a focus on Healthy Choices, Mental Fitness, Workplace Wellness, and Community Connections. For more information about free resources, volunteering, classes and events, go to


. The Dispatch partnered with Crow Wing Energized for a regular column to help motivate health and wellness in the community.


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