Kids Health: This month is all about kids. Create easy and healthy back to school meals, check out what local sports or activities are available in your community, and stay up to date on immunizations.
Get Outside: July is a perfect time to get outside! The summer is buzzing with all kinds of activities, people, and great weather. Spending time outdoors gives your brain a break, along with potentially reducing depression and increasing concentration. So get outside for its many health benefits and enjoy the scenery!
Eat a Rainbow of Colors: Eat a Rainbow of Colors! Eating a rainbow of fruits and vegetables is a great guide to health. The greater the variety of color you consume, the greater the range of nutrients your body is getting. Try mixing in new colors into your recipes!
Healthy Living with BBQ Grilling: Grilling is a great way to enjoy the outdoors during the spring and summer time. Put a healthy spin on grilling by cooking up some delicious and healthy meals. A BBQ doesn’t have to be heavy or full of fat. Read the May Health Focus Newsletter for more great information!
Grow Your Garden: This month’s Health Focus Topic is “Grow Your Garden.” Reap the fruits of your labor by gardening. Gardening is great for all ages, provides fresh and wholesome produce right in your own backyard, is great for your body, and provides a sense of achievement.
Cook at Home: Preparing meals at home with whole ingredients gives you more control over what you eat. Try incorporating new fruits and vegetables into recipes for your kids to try. Encourage your family to sit down all together and eat at the table with no distractions. Eating meals at home gives families a chance to bond.
Keep Your Heart Healthy: It’s American Heart Month! Keep your heart healthy by exercising, eating right, reducing stress, and quitting tobacco.
Store Food Safely: Learn how to store food safely and extend the life of fresh produce. Storing food safely and effectively cuts down on food waste and can protect from food borne illness.
Healthy Soups and Stews: Soups and stews are a staple food in the winter. Try different kinds of soup this month with lots of veggies and a variety of low-sodium broths and spices for a healthy and hearty meal.
Diabetes Awareness Month: November is Diabetes Awareness Month. Nearly 30 million adults and children are living with diabetes in the U.S. and 86 million have prediabetes and are at risk for developing type 2 diabetes. Take time to learn the risk factors and tips for controlling diabetes.
Flu Shots & Vaccinations: According to the CDC, yearly flu vaccination is the best tool currently available to protect against influenza (flu). Getting a flu shot can reduce flu illnesses, doctors visits, and missed school and work. There are plenty of good reasons to get a flu shot this season!
Eating on a Budget: According to a survey by the International Food and Information Council, 60% of American’s think it’s too expensive to eat healthfully. Many may think that healthy eating is too difficult on a tight budget. There are many helpful tips and tricks to get the best deal and eat wholesome foods.
Sleep: Do you get the recommended 7-8 hours of sleep per night? Your brain and body need sleep to recharge and function at its best. Sleep affects your concentration, mood, appetite, blood pressure, and more. There are lots of easy ways to change your daily and bedtime routine for a better night’s sleep tonight!
Farmers Markets: Summer is the perfect time to explore your local farmers markets. Minnesota alone has over 150! Farmers markets support local farmers and sustainable agriculture, provide you with fresh and wholesome produce, and even better, farmers market prices are often better than store prices. Many markets also offer fresh bread and baked goods, meats, jams, and more.
Exercise: Exercise is so important for good health. It helps you look better, feel better, sleep better, and even boosts your mood. Consistent exercise is key for maintaining health. Try working out or walking in ten minute bursts at a time to start, then increase minutes over time. Vary your routine so you stay interested. Get family and friends involved so you stay more accountable and motivated to stay active.
Mental Health Awareness Month: Around 20% of children and adolescents worldwide struggle with mental disorders and problems. Almost all people deal with mental health difficulties at some point in their lives. Learn the signs and seek help if you or a loved one is struggling. By educating ourselves and supporting those in need, we can remove the stigma of mental health issues together.
Drink More Water: Did you know your body is made up of 60% water? Your body fluids rely on water to do their job, yet most people aren’t drinking enough. The average recommended number for men is 13 cups per day, and an average of 9 cups per day for women. Staying hydrated is critical for bodily functions, a clear mind, and even maintaining healthy skin.
Fast Food Alternatives: Fast food is a fast and convenient choice for many, but is it good for us? Fast food contains high levels of fat, calories, and sodium that can be harmful to your health if it’s consumed too often. By choosing smaller sizes, skipping sauces and condiments, and choosing grilled over fried foods, you can still eat out while staying healthy.
Portion Control: Healthy portion sizes should create a plate that looks like the one pictured. Half the plate is fruits and vegetables, one quarter is whole grains, and the other quarter is proteins. Choose a colorful array of fruits and vegetables so you’re getting the most nutrients, along with whole grains such as brown rice, whole wheat pasta, or whole wheat toast to your plate. Lastly add a protein that’s lean like boneless skinless chicken breast, turkey, or fish that contain healthy fats like salmon, herring, or trout.
Eat Well on $4/ day: Good and Cheap by Leanne Brown is a free, downloadable cookbook. The book is geared towards low-income and SNAP (Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program) recipients who may have challenges eating healthy and great tasting food on a budget. The book is also great for those who love to cook or for those looking to incorporate more veggies in their diets. Find great recipes, pantry staples, and shopping tips too. Visit her website at www.leannebrown.com.
Leanne, the author, lays out a great list of tips including buying in bulk, using a pepper grinder, why it’s important to treat your freezer with respect, and more!