Diane May Nutrition Blog

Spring Cleaning for Health

April 30th, 2014

The polar vortex is finally gone and its time to start spring cleaning.  While you are cleaning out those closets and the garage, its also the perfect time to re-evaluate your health and wellness.  Whether you just want to look better in your bathing suit, you want to improve your diet or you are struggling with health concerns, now is the time to take control of your well being.  The most important factor in overall health is maintaing a healthy weight.  Overweight and obesity can lead to a myriad of health concerns: Hypertension, type 2 diabetes, coronary artery disease, certain cancers (breast, endometrial, colon), stroke, liver and gallbladder disease, dyslipidemia, sleep disturbances, osteoarthritis, gynecological issues and fertility issues for both men and women.

It can be daunting to start a new health and wellness plan, so where to begin?  With simple, attainable goals you can achieve a healthier lifestyle.  Pick a goal every week that you know is reasonable and do-able. Keep that goal until it is a regular part of your daily routine. When you slowly change behaviors, success will surely follow. Some examples of small goals would be:

  • I will start to keep a food journal
  • I will increase my fruit and vegetable consumption-eat the rainbow
  • I will swap refined grains and carbohydrates with whole grains and complex carbohydrates
  • I will pay attention to portions
  • I will quit smoking
  • I will keep all beverages calorie free and increase water consumption
  • I will start to move more on most days (remember to get medical clearance from your physician before starting any new exercise routine)

It probably took a long time to develop the habits you now have, so you need to be patient, and work steadily to make positive behavior change.  Get support from family, friends and an RD to help you reach your goals. Even small losses, 5-10% of your total weight can have significant improvements in your health. The key to successful weight loss is to eat less and move more, but do it sensibly.  By focusing on weekly goals, rather than that final number you are trying to reach, you will be moving towards a lifetime of health and wellness.  I know you can do it!


Snap Pea & Quinoa Salad

From EatingWell:  March/April 2013

Spring Cleaning

Makes: 6 servings, about 1 cup each

Active Time: 25 minutes

Total Time: 1 1/2 hours



  • 2 cups water
  • 1 cup quinoa
  • 2 cups fresh snap peas, trimmed and cut diagonally into thirds
  • 1 1/2 cups button mushrooms, cut into quarters or eighths if large
  • 1/3 cup thinly sliced red onion, cut into 1-inch lengths
  • 1 tablespoon chopped fresh dill
  • 1/3 cup white balsamic vinegar or white-wine vinegar
  • 1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil or flaxseed oil
  • 1 teaspoon freshly grated lemon zest
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice



  1. Combine water and quinoa in a medium saucepan. Bring to a boil. Reduce to a simmer, cover and cook for 15 minutes. Fluff with a fork and set aside to cool completely.
  2. Combine peas, mushrooms, onion and dill in a medium bowl. Whisk vinegar, oil, lemon zest, lemon juice in a small bowl. Stir the dressing into the cooled quinoa until evenly dispersed. Add the quinoa to the vegetable mixture, toss and serve.


  • Make Ahead Tip: Prepare quinoa (Step 1), cover and refrigerate for up to 3 days. Cover and refrigerate the prepared salad for up to 1 day.


Per serving: 223 calories; 11 g fat (2 g sat, 8 g mono); 0 mg cholesterol; 25 g carbohydrates; 1 g added sugars; 6 g protein; 3 g fiber; 10 mg sodium; 311 mg potassium.

Nutrition Bonus: Vitamin C (32% daily value), Folate & Magnesium (17% dv).

Carbohydrate Servings: 1 1/2