Sunday, October 19, 2014

Celebrate National Farm to School Month


The National Farm to School Network advocated for the creation of National Farm to School Month and now organizes the annual celebration in October. National Farm to School Month was designated by Congress in 2010 to demonstrate the growing importance of farm to school programs as a means to improve child nutrition, support local economies and educate children about the origins of food.

The National Farm to School Network has also developed resources and activities to promote Farm to School Month in schools, communities and media outlets. All of these tools are available on farmtoschool.org.

Here are some ways you can help us get the word out about Farm to School Month:
   • #F2SMonth - Use this hashtag in your social
Media Messages
   •@FarmtoSchool - follow on Twitter
   • Follow on Facebook

Learn more about the movement throughout October. They will be sharing stories and information on their blog about how farm to school is empowering children and their families to make informed food choices and contributing to their communities. 

The resource database is home to even more information and includes searchable tags for Farm to School Month as well as topics like farm to preschool, school gardens and procurement.

Celebrate National Farm to School Month

Many farm to school programs begin with a small activity generating interest and engages the whole community.

Organizations and Businesses
   • Become an official Farm to School Month partner! Partners commit to using their communications channels to spread the word about Farm to School Month. Suggested messaging and weekly updates will be provided by NFSN. Contact: info@farmtoschool.org
   • Show your support for Farm to School Month by becoming an official sponsor! Contact: info@farmtoschool.org

Teachers
   • Plan nutrition education activities, such as Harvest of the Month, featuring a local food product that is in season.
   • Connect instructional school gardens and garden based learning activities to the curriculum.
   • Organize farm tours or trips to the local farmers’ market.
   • Send information about Farm to School Month to parents.

School food service professionals
   • Promote Farm to School Month on the school menu and in the cafeteria. Find logos, posters and more at farmtoschool.org
   • Do a taste test of local products or feature one item for lunch, breakfast or snacks.
   • Create a farm to school salad bar using local products.

Farmers
   • Connect with your local school and offer to conduct a classroom session during October or offer to host a visit to your farm.
   • Promote Farm to School Month on your farm or at your farmers’ market booth with posters and other materials, which can be downloaded or ordered from farmtoschool.org.

Families
   • Visit your local farmers’ market. Buy something you’ve never tried before, cook it and share with your family and friends.
   • Cook with seasonal products as much as possible. Find out what products are grown in your region and when. Most State Departments of Agriculture or Buy Fresh Buy Local chapters can provide you with a regional crop calendar.
   • Volunteer at your local school to support a school garden or classroom educational activity.

Resource:
To learn more, visit the National Farm to School website.

Saturday, October 18, 2014

October 18, National Mammography Day - Remind a friend to have a Mammogram

October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month. October 18, National Mammography Day. Remind a friend to have a Mammogram. Pass it Along.


Information obtained from the
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention


A mammogram is an x-ray of the breast used to look for early signs of breast cancer. Regular mammograms are the best tests doctors have to find breast cancer early. When breast cancer is found early, many women go on to live long and healthy lives.

Women should have mammograms every two years from age 50 to 74 years; and more often if breast cancer runs in the family or you have any symptoms or changes in your breast.

To find out where you can get a mammogram, the CDC has provided the following resources.

1. If you have a regular doctor, talk to him or her. 
2. Call the National Cancer Institute's Cancer Information Service (CIS) at 1-800-4-CANCER (1-800-422-6237). For TTY: 1-800-332-8615. 
3. For Medicare information, you can call 1-800 MEDICARE (1-800-633-4227) or visit The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services. 
4. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has a program called the National Breast and Cervical Cancer Early Detection Program,which works with health departments and other groups to provide low-cost or free mammograms to women who qualify. Find out if you qualify.



October 18, World Menopause Day
How to Avoid Menopausal Weight Gain


Every woman will go through the “change of life,” around 50 years of age plus or minus. This is the time of her last period (or menstruation). Symptoms of menopause vary with every woman. Common symptoms include hot flashes; night sweats; sleep irregularity; mood changes; and possible weight gain around the middle. Some women go through menopause without symptoms.

Due to a decrease in hormone levels and the aging process, many women find themselves gaining weight in their forties and fifties. There is a loss of muscle, which decreases the metabolism; and a gain of fat, mainly in the belly area. Lifestyle factors will play an important role in how you handle menopause. Menopausal women tend to be less active and eat more calories than they need.

Nutrition, Eating and
Wellness Guidelines for Menopause
  1. Maintain a healthy weight; it will decrease your risk of heart disease and other problems. 
  2. Meet your calcium and vitamin D needs. This is important to maintain healthy bones and prevent bone loss that may occur after menopause. Good food sources of calcium include dairy products, such as milk, yogurt and cheese; fortified soy and rice beverages; fortified juices; and canned fish with bones. Good food sources of vitamin D include milk, fortified soy and rice beverages, fortified juices, and fatty fish. 
  3. Be physically active every day. Physical activity helps maintain a healthy weight, keep bones strong and energy levels up, and decrease the risk of heart disease and other age-related complications.
  4. Some women will try soy and flax in food to help relieve the side effects of menopause. Currently, studies have not proven that soy and flax help.
  5. Wear lightweight and layered clothes. Body temperature fluctuates from hot to cold.
  6. Keep a cold glass of water by your side. Due to hot flashes and excessive sweating, it is important to stay hydrated.
  7. Relax.
  8. Take time to laugh.

How to Avoid Menopausal Weight Gain
You don't have to gain weight as a result of menopause.
Elizabeth Somer, RD explains how to avoid weight gain after menopause.

The Menopause Blues



I Will Not Age


Is It Hot In Here, Or Is It Me?


Resources and References


The International Menopause Society (IMS), in collaboration with the World Health Organization, has designated October 18 as World Menopause Day. To celebrate World Menopause Day, IMS is launching a new campaign to create awareness of understanding weight gain at menopause and the implications it can have on the future health of women in the post-menopausal period. 

For women aged 55–65 years, weight gain is one of their major health concerns and many are not aware of the health implications of excessive weight gain, particularly around the abdomen, which is associated with a heightened risk of cardiovascular and metabolic disease, and also impacts adversely on health-related quality of life and sexual function.
An educational toolkit of materials have been developed to support local country initiatives throughout the month of October to raise awareness of this potential health issue and many have been translated into key languages to ensure the campaign has a truly international perspective.

The IMS hopes that national societies will take the opportunity of World Menopause Day to highlight the increasing importance of menopausal health issues, by contacting the women of their country to encourage them to talk to their doctors about menopause and its long-term effects.

Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics, Eating Right during Menopause



Friday, October 17, 2014

October 12-18, 2014 National Food Bank Week – How we can make a difference?


Resource. Feeding America

In many ways, America is the land of plenty. But for 1 in 6 people in the United States, hunger is a reality. Many people believe that the problems associated with hunger are confined to small pockets of society, certain areas of the country, or certain neighborhoods, but the reality is much different.

Right now, millions of Americans are struggling with hunger. These are often hard-working adults, children and seniors who simply cannot make ends meet and are forced to go without food for several meals, or even days.

It’s time to educate ourselves about the causes of hunger in America. 



Feeding America network of 200 food banks across the country are first-class organizations in the fight against hunger. They are more than just distribution centers, they are core to providing hope to the communities they serve.

The following is a summary of the information found on the Feeding America Website. 

Nearly 49 million people in America face hunger. That is 1 in 6 of the U.S. population – including more than 1 in 5 children. Don’t let their struggles go unheard. Join the Feeding America network of more than 200 food banks and Speak Out Against Hunger. http://hungeractionmonth.org/

Feeding America is the nation's leading domestic hunger-relief charity. Their mission is to feed America's hungry through a nationwide network of member food banks and engage our country in the fight to end hunger.

Feeding America provides emergency food assistance to an estimated 37 million low-income people annually, a 46 percent increase from 25 million since Hunger in America 2010.

Among members of Feeding America, 74 percent of pantries, 65 percent of kitchens, and 54 percent of shelters reported that there had been an increase since 2006 in the number of clients who come to their emergency food program sites.

Hunger can affect anyone. Feeding America has identified groups at risk, including young children, hunger in the suburbs, rural hunger, senior hunger, and the working poor.


Special on Childhood Hunger
Kate is a fictional character who represents the very situation in which many children find themselves when their parents lose their jobs. Find out how you can help.  http://hungeractionmonth.org/



Childhood hunger hinders a young person's ability to learn. They are more likely to suffer from poverty as an adult. Scientific evidence suggests that hungry children are less likely to become productive citizens. Insufficient nutrition puts children at risk for illness and weakens their immune system. The immature immune systems of young children, ages 0 – 5, make them especially vulnerable to nutritional deprivation and as a result, the ability to learn, grow, and fight infections is adversely affected.


Please find out how you can help during National Food Bank Week




Thursday, October 16, 2014

October 16, World Food Day - Theme Family Farming

World Food Day
Family Farming


World Food Day was established by the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) in November 1979. FAO celebrates World Food Day each year on October 16th, the day on which the Organization was founded in 1945.

T
he official World Food Day theme is announced by the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations. The goal is to give focus to World Food Day observances and raise awareness and understanding of approaches to ending hunger.

Family Farming: “Feeding the world, caring for the earth” - has been chosen as the 2014 theme to raise the profile of family farming and smallholder farmers. It focuses world attention on the significant role of family farming in eradicating hunger and poverty, providing food security and nutrition, improving livelihoods, managing natural resources, protecting the environment, and achieving sustainable development, in particular in rural areas.

The UN General Assembly has designated 2014 “International Year of Family Farming.” This is a strong signal that the international community recognizes the important contribution of family farmers to world food security.

Almost 870 million people worldwide are chronically malnourished. Unsustainable food systems are destroying the natural environment needed for our future food supply.

Every feature of the food system has an effect on peoples’ ability to choose healthy diets. Addressing malnutrition requires action and interventions in agriculture and the food system, in natural resource management, in public health and education, and in policy development.



Hungry Planet Episode 20 - Special Report
Presented in this video are three reports on agricultural cooperatives, a key to food security.

  • In Guatemala, farmers making a living from small plots of land struggle to produce bigger crops, become better connected to markets and earn more money.
  • In Afghanistan, as foreign troops prepare to leave, an unexpected kind of peace building is taking place thanks to the rise in dairy cooperatives.
  • In Southern Niger, agricultural cooperatives gain access to better seeds and better farming techniques to fight the region's severe droughts.


The objectives of World Food Day are to:

*Encourage attention to agricultural food production and to stimulate national, bilateral, multilateral and non-governmental efforts to this end;

*Encourage economic and technical cooperation among developing countries;

*Encourage the participation of rural people, particularly women and the least privileged categories, in decisions and activities influencing their living conditions;

*Heighten public awareness of the problem of hunger in the world;

*Promote the transfer of technologies to the developing world; and

*Strengthen international and national solidarity in the struggle against hunger, malnutrition and poverty and draw attention to achievements in food and agricultural development.


To learn more about World Food Day, visit the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO).

Follow FAO World Food Day on Twitter.

Wednesday, October 15, 2014

October 15, Global Handwashing Day


Global Handwashing Day will involve millions of people in over 100 countries around the world. Global Handwashing Day (GHD) was created to:
• Foster and support a global culture of handwashing with soap.
• Shine a spotlight on the state of handwashing in every country.
• Raise awareness about the benefits of handwashing with soap.



Why Handwashing with Soap?

Handwashing with soap is the most effective and inexpensive way to prevent diarrheal and acute respiratory infections, which take the lives of millions of children in developing countries every year. Together, they are responsible for the majority of all child deaths. Yet, despite its lifesaving potential, handwashing with soap is seldom practiced and difficult to promote.

Turning handwashing with soap before eating and after using the toilet into a habit could save more lives than any single vaccine or medical intervention, cutting deaths from diarrhea by almost half and deaths from acute respiratory infections by one-quarter. A vast change in handwashing behavior is critical to meeting the Millennium Development Goal of reducing deaths among children under the age of five by two-thirds by 2015.

Global Handwashing Day focuses on children because they suffer the most from diarrheal and respiratory diseases and deaths, but research shows that children can also be powerful agents for changing behaviors like handwashing with soap in their communities.


When should you wash your hands?
·         Before, during, and after preparing food
·         Before eating food
·         Before and after caring for someone who is sick
·         Before and after treating a cut or wound
·         After using the toilet
·         After changing diapers or cleaning up a child who has used the toilet
·         After blowing your nose, coughing, or sneezing
·         After touching an animal or animal waste
·         After touching garbage
 
For more information on handwashing with soap, including research, tools, and news visit www.globalhandwashing.org.


The Global Handwashing Day's theme video with
instructions for children on how to wash their hands properly.




It’s In Your Hands




Resources and References
1. CDC, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Handwashing: Clean Hands Save Lives
3. Kids Eat Right, Hand-washing Basics
3. Partnership for Food Safety Education, Fight BAC!
4. The Scrub Club. A fun, interactive and educational Web site that teaches children the proper way to wash their hands. The site contains interactive games, educational music, downloadable activities for kids, educational materials for teachers and program information for parents.
5. Healthy Schools, Healthy People, It’s a SNAP! (School Network for Absenteeism Prevention) program is a joint initiative of the CDC and American Cleaning Institute. This program seeks to improve hand hygiene habits to help prevent the spread of infectious disease and reduce related absenteeism. This grassroots, education-based effort can help improve health by making hand cleaning an integral part of the school day. Without proper hand cleaning, a single infection can quickly spread among students, teachers, family and friends.


Tuesday, October 14, 2014

National School Lunch Week
October 13–17, 2014

"In the long view, no nation is
healthier than its children,
or more prosperous than its farmers."
- President Harry Truman, on signing the
1946 National School Lunch Act.

Through the Years

The National School Lunch Program was created in 1946 when President Truman signed the National School Lunch Act into law. The National School Lunch Program is a federal nutrition assistance program. Through the years, the program has expanded to include the School Breakfast Program, Snack Program, Child and Adult Care Feeding Program and the Summer Food Service Program. In 1962, Congress designated the week beginning on the second Sunday in October each year as "National School Lunch Week."

The video below looks at the school lunch program from the late 1930’s to the present day and includes President Obama signing the Healthy, Hunger-Free Kids Act. One can see from the photographs some of the changes in the foods provided. There is an increase in whole grains, fruits, vegetables, lean protein and lowfat dairy. (Part of the video has clips from a film produced by the USDA in the mid-60s.)




School Lunch Resources 
Organizations, Associations, and Programs
School Nutrition Association 2014 Theme: “Get in the Game with School Lunch.” Recognized as the authority on school nutrition, the SNA has been advancing the availability, quality and acceptance of school nutrition programs as an integral part of education since 1946. The School Nutrition Association is a national, nonprofit professional organization.  Mission. To advance good nutrition for all children.
National Farm to School Month Farm to School is broadly defined as any program that connects schools (K-12) and local farms with the goal of serving healthy meals in school cafeterias, improving student nutrition, providing agriculture, health, nutrition education, and supporting local and regional farmers. Farm to School programs exist in all 50 states, but since Farm to School is a grassroots movement, programs are as diverse as the communities they serve.

About the Farm to Preschool program at UEPI, Occidental College
The National School Lunch Program (NSLP) is a federally assisted meal program operating in public and nonprofit private schools and residential child care institutions. It provides nutritionally balanced, low-cost or free lunches to children each school day. The program was established under the National School Lunch Act, signed by President Harry Truman in 1946.
Kids Eat Right Kids Eat Right your source for scientifically-based health and nutrition information you can trust to help your child grow healthy. As a parent or caretaker you need reliable resources and you can find them here, backed by the expertise of nutrition professionals.
Team Nutrition. Campaign launched by USDA's Food and Nutrition Service (FNS) to encourage and teach children, parents, and caregivers to eat healthy and be physically active every day. 
Choose MyPlate. The website features practical information and tips to help Americans build healthier diets.
Let’s Move is about putting children on the path to a healthy future during their earliest months and years. Giving parents helpful information and fostering environments that support healthy choices. Providing healthier foods in our schools. Ensuring that every family has access to healthy, affordable food. And, helping children become more physically active.

Elmo Doesn't Fear Obama's School Lunch

Elmo joins White House Chef Sam Kass in White House kitchen to talk about the importance of healthy and delicious school meals following President Obama's signing of the Healthy, Hunger-Free Kids Act. 

We Can. The We Can! GO, SLOW, and WHOA Foods fact sheet (pdf) can be posted on the refrigerator or used when grocery shopping. The We Can! Parent Tips - Snack (pdf) 100 Calories or Less tip sheet can help consumers choose vegetables, whole grains, and fat-free or low-fat (1 percent) milk for healthier snacks.
Healthy Children The American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) and its member pediatricians dedicate their efforts and resources to the health, safety and well-being of infants, children, adolescents and young adults. Healthy Children - Nutrition; Food Allergies in Children
Action for Healthy Kids, we believe there are ways to reduce and prevent childhood obesity and undernourishment. Learn how Action for Healthy Kids is working with schools, families and communities to help our kids learn to be healthier and be ready to learn.

National Dairy Council® (NDC)
Child Nutrition Fuel Up To Play 60 sponsored by National Dairy Council and the National Football League, in collaboration with United States Department of Agriculture (USDA).
Fuel Up to Play 60 is an in-school program that encourages the availability and consumption of nutrient-rich foods, along with at least 60 minutes of daily physical activity.
Fruits and Veggies More Matters
.
Priceless: School Lunch
"Priceless" launched the campaign depicting the cafeteria tray as the conduit for a reformed school food system that supports healthy children, local farms, and smart schools. The video was created by three IATP Food and Society Fellows, Shalini Kantayya, Nicole Betancourt, and Debra Eschmeyer to raise awareness for the Child Nutrition Act.
Tom Vilsack, Secretary of Agriculture stated “National School Lunch Week reminds us how important it is that our children be healthy and active, that they not go hungry, and that they have access to nutritious meals." 

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