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    Happy National Nutrition Month®! This is a great time of year to reevaluate your eating pattern to determine if it’s working for you. Are you getting the healthful foods you need to live your best life?

    An eating pattern represents all of the food and drink choices you make from day to day over the course of your lifetime. It’s more important to focus on healthy shifts you can make to your eating pattern than on individual foods. Be careful of fad diets that eliminate entire food groups (more to come on this on future posts!).

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    Thinking of skipping shoveling after a big snowstorm? I get it – it’s time-consuming, it’s cold, it feels never ending during these Midwest winters, and if you don’t warm up properly (see blog one!), it can leave you feeling sore, or worse: injured!

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    There are an estimated 11,500 snow shovel-related injuries and medical emergencies a year. Two local experts provide safe snow shoveling tips to keep you safe and pain-free.

    “As residents of the Midwest, we understand weather can be subject to change in the blink of an eye. When heading out for snow removal, check for icy conditions underneath the snow. This can prevent slips and falls that could lead to unplanned injuries and expensive emergency room visits,” says Justin Rumpza, PT, DPT.   

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    Are you looking for a quick breakfast that packs the protein? Plant-based proteins can help you build muscle and provide heart health benefits to your meals, snacks and even beverages!

    These recipes incorporate organic tofu but you can easily add other plant-based proteins that you enjoy. Firm or soft tofu can be added to any of your favorite smoothie recipes. The addition of tofu doesn’t add much of any flavor but it does add protein, vitamins, minerals and unsaturated fats. Read more about soy products below.

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    Are you tired of the same old breakfast every morning? It’s time to turn over a new leaf!

    If you’re looking for a fresh start to your day with protein, healthy fats, and an abundance of vitamins and minerals then look no further. Breakfast salads are an easy and delicious way to fill up on fiber and 2- 3 servings of fruits or vegetables all before 9:00 a.m.

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    The 2015–2020 Dietary Guidelines for Americans recommends that adults consume 1.5–2 cups of fruits and 2–3 cups of vegetables per day. Despite these recommendations, recent data show low consumption. Only 1 in 10 US adults eat the recommended amount of fruits or vegetables each day. This number is even lower among American youth.

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    Diabetes will likely cause changes in your life and your food choices, but with proper care, most individuals with diabetes can take charge of their health. Making wise food choices to manage blood glucose will help prevent negative health outcomes such as heart disease, stroke, and kidney disease. However, making and knowing the right dietary choices for meals and snacks can be confusing.

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    Spring is underway and many of you have probably been doing some spring cleaning in your home, closets and yards but what about your kitchen?

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    We know that small changes in the way we eat can have positive health impacts down the road.

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    Here are three heart smart beh

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    Dietary patterns can help predict health later in life.

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    September is Healthy Aging Month which is something we can all acknowledge since we’re all aging. I like to call it “gaining momentum”. We all gather momentum as we age through the build-up of experiences and insights. Embrace this dynamic process that leads to new abilities and knowledge that can be shared with one another.

    There is not one right way to age well or a certain path that must be taken. Find what works for you and maintain a positive outlook along the way.   

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    President Trump declared the month of April as Winning on Reducing Food Waste Month in his Presidential Message on April 1, 2019 and is encouraging public action and participation from all sectors.

    Ways to participate:

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    April is Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS) Awareness Month AND Stress Awareness Month. If you don't know what IBS is or what it's like, then consider yourself lucky. Between 25 and 45 million people in the United States (10 to 15% of the population) are affected.

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    Oats can be found in many cultural dishes such as Scotland's haggis and Muesli from the Swiss. Oats have been a popular addition to many recipes and a staple food source for centuries (printable recipes below).

    Oats are an extremely versatile whole grain and can be added to many recipes from breakfast to beverages. Here are some of my favorite applications for oats:

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    With cooler temps moving in I have been itching to make pumpkin everything, homemade breads, soups and apple cider doughnuts. I love all of the fall flavors and visiting my local farmers' market to pick out seasonal produce to experiment with. I was at the market last weekend and bought some squash, mums, leeks and potatoes. You might be surprised by what you find, I always find something new that I haven't tried before or at least a new way of preparing the fruits and vegetables I'm used to.

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    When I was a child, I loved running errands with my mom. I especially loved going to the grocery store and picking out colorful produce and other staples we needed for the week. I would wander through the produce section eagerly anticipating a new fruit or vegetable sample. I'll never forget the day I tried star fruit for the first time; amazed that a plant could produce something so beautiful and sweet.

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    Green is the color of spring, rebirth, renewal and represents balance and growth. If you're eating with the seasons it's time to focus on the green and restore your energy levels.

    Greens are in season! Spring is peak season so pick some up at your local market or grocer. You can even grow some yourself in a matter of weeks. Leafy greens are versatile and can be cooked or eaten raw. They range in flavors from sweet to peppery and have many culinary uses. Try one of these today:

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    As we head into the month of March, let's all pause and reflect on our eating habits because after all, March is National Nutrition Month and a great time to reevaluate what is on our plates.

    More importantly let's pay special attention to what we are scraping off our plates into the trash. It is estimated that 90 billion pounds of food is thrown away each year either at home or when eating out.