March is National Nutrition Month and this year’s theme by the Academy of Nutrition & Dietetics is Celebrate a World of Flavors. Meeting with your dietitian regularly can help you create healthier habits that still celebrate your individual heritage. They might even encourage you to expand your palate and try new foods and flavors from around the world. Below are some of our registered dietitian’s favorite go-to’s.


Italian Cuisine

“My favorite cuisine is Italian. I love most Italian foods, especially pizza and pasta – probably because of my Italian grandmother. I love recreating healthier versions of family recipes. Chickpea pasta is a great high protein swap for traditional pasta and my family and I also really enjoy cauliflower crust pizza.” Karen Kelly, RD  

“Italian food is my favorite cuisine. I love all dishes, but I would say my favorite is chicken parmesan with a side of Caesar salad. I love making healthier versions of this dish at home. I like to bake my chicken cutlets instead of frying them in oil and using almond flour as a lower carb option. For the salad, I like to use kale as a base and a yogurt-based Caesar dressing so it’s higher in protein.” Alana Weisman, RD

Japanese Cuisine

“I love Japanese food, sushi in particular. My tips for ordering healthy sushi are to choose “naruto” style rolls. These are wrapped in thinly sliced cucumber instead of rice. To keep the carbs low, I also recommend avoiding any tempura options and sticking to rolls like California, spicy tuna and sashimi options.” Dana Babeu, RD  

Mediterranean Cuisine

“I really enjoy Mediterranean cuisine, seafood in particular. I love wild caught salmon because it’s a great source of protein and omega-3 fatty acids.” Kelly Beneduce, RD 

Thai Cuisine

One of my top favorites is Thai cuisine. I’ve traveled to Thailand multiple times during my mixed martial arts (MMA) career, and I’ve experienced authentic Thai cuisine at it’s finest. I love all the fresh and local produce that’s used. One of my favorite dishes is Chicken Satay, not only does it taste good, it’s high in protein also. Another high protein meal option I enjoy is Thai Basil Chicken (Pad Krapow) with a side of steamed veggies.” Clarissa Padua, RD 

What’s your favorite cuisine? Do you have a family recipe that you’d like to share? Email us at or reach out to us on social media. Stay tuned to our social media pages for more National Nutrition Month posts all month long.

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    By: New Jersey Bariatric Center Staff

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