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:
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: firstname.lastname@example.org
• Show your support for Farm to School Month by becoming an official sponsor! Contact: email@example.com
• 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.
• 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.
• 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.
Pumpkins are thought to have originated in North America. The oldest evidence, pumpkin-related seeds dating between 7000 and 5500 BC, was found in Mexico.
The color of pumpkins derives from orange carotenoid pigments, including beta-cryptoxanthin, alpha and beta-carotene, all of which are provitamin A compounds converted to vitamin A in the body.
Pumpkins Is anything more fall-like than a pumpkin? These orange winter squashes are chock-full of vitamin A and deliver 3 grams of fiber per ½-cup serving of cooked sugar pumpkin, plus potassium. Note that the pumpkins you carve into jack-o’-lanterns are not the same type of pumpkins you eat. Try pumpkin puree mixed into mac-and-cheese or with hummus for a seasonal spread. Looking for more options? Add pumpkin to pancake batter, oatmeal, smoothies or your kid's favorite chili.
And don't forget about roasting the seeds! Pumpkin seeds are a delicious and healthy snack and a good source of several nutrients, including zinc, which is essential for many body processes including immune function.
To toast your pumpkin seeds, first, rinse to remove pulp and strings. Spread seeds on a baking sheet that has been coated with cooking spray or drizzle a small amount of olive oil over seeds. Bake at 325°F for about 30 minutes or until lightly toasted. Stir occasionally during cooking. Take a look at your spice rack and try a seasoning on your toasted seeds such as garlic powder or Cajun seasoning.
"For generations, kids have toted UNICEF's collection boxes door to door on Halloween calling out "Trick-or-Treat for UNICEF!" They have raised more than $170 million since 1950 to help children around the world - funds that have enabled UNICEF to save and improve children's lives by providing health care, improved nutrition, clean water, education, and more."
This year due to the Covid-19 pandemic UNICEF is going Virtual. Kids may not be able to go door-to-door this Halloween, but they can Trick-or-Treat for UNICEF all October long! Some friends of UNICEF are here to explain how it works this year—by going virtual. Learn more and sign up at www.trickortreatforunicef.org
Welcome to Our Food Day Celebration! From Our Garden
Food Day inspires Americans to change their diets and our food policies. Every October 24, thousands of events all around the country bring Americans together to celebrate and enjoy real food and to push for improved food policies.
6 FOOD DAY PRINCIPLES
1. Reduce diet-related disease by promoting safe, healthy foods.
2. Support sustainable farms and limit subsidies to big agribusiness.
3. Expand access to food and alleviate hunger.
4. Protect the environment and animals by reforming factory farms.
5. Promote health by curbing junk-food marketing to kids.
6. Support fair conditions for food and farmworkers.
Planning Our Food Day Meal
Every family is unique. When planning our meal we considered foods from our garden, finances, physical abilities, including finger foods and easy to chew and swallow; and color – the theme for our dinner. Our family and friends come from diverse backgrounds with physical and emotional challenges or chronic illnesses, such as Cerebral Palsy, Autism, and Heart Disease.
The main course is a tri-color pasta with a variety of toppings to choose from. Our garden provided us with tomatoes, onions, broccoli, cucumbers, and basil. We purchased spinach, pasta sauce, locally grown fruits, part-skim mozzarella, and for the meat-eaters, we had ground turkey meatballs and shredded chicken.
In addition, we prepared a red, white, and green grilled cheese sandwich from the US Dept of Health and Human Services cookbook “Keep the Beat Recipes,” recipes. A free copy of the cookbook is available on their website. The dessert was a big hit. We made fruit kabobs using locally grown fruits and paired with low-fat ice cream and for Jake, we prepared a smoothie using the same ingredients.
Adaptations and Individual Preferences
My son Jake was born with Cerebral Palsy and is quadriplegia. He is unable to hold utensils and requires a straw to drink fluids. Finger foods and a weighted cup with a flexi straw usually provide him the most independence.
Aside from pork, bologna can alternatively be made out of chicken, turkey, beef, venison, a combination, or soy protein. Typical seasoning for bologna includes black pepper, nutmeg, allspice, celery seed, coriander, and like mortadella, myrtle berries give it its distinctive flavor, U.S. Government regulations require American bologna to be finely ground and without visible pieces of fat.
Every child should be able to experience the joy and tradition of trick-or-treating on Halloween. But kids with food allergies are often left out of the fun since most candy is off-limits. Beware of small items a child can choke on.
Food Allergy Research & Education's (FARE) Teal Pumpkin Project helps make sure all children will come home on Halloween night with something they can enjoy. It just takes one simple act: offering non-food treats, such as glow sticks or small toys, as an alternative to candy.
Music: The Wonderful World of Color, Walt Disney and Disney World.
Eat right with colors explores the health benefits associated with eating foods of many colors. Including color diversity in your meals and food choices enhances your intake of a wide range of nutrients.
Red and Pink Foods
Apples, Beets, Cayenne, Cherries, Cranberries, Guava, Kidney Beans, Papaya, Pink Beans, Pink/Red Grapefruit, Pomegranates, Radicchio, Radishes, Raspberries, Red Bell Peppers, Red Cabbages, Red Chili Peppers, Red Corn, Red Currants, Red Grapes, Red Onions, Red Pears, Red Peppers, Red Plums, Red Potatoes, Red Tomatoes, Rhubarb, Strawberries, Tomatoes, Watermelons
Alfalfa, Artichokes, Arugula, Asparagus, Avocado, Bok Choy, Broccoli, Broccoli rabe, Brussels Sprouts, Celery, Chives, Collard Greens, Cucumbers, Dandelion Greens, Edamame, Endive, Fennel, Green apples, Green Beans, Green cabbage, Green Grapes, Green Olives, Green Onion, Green Pears, Green Peas, Green Pepper, Green Tomatoes, Honeydew, Kale, Kiwi, Leeks, Lettuce, Limes, Mint, Okra, Oregano, Parsley, Pistachios, Snow Peas, Spinach, Sugar snap peas, Swiss Chard, Tarragon, Tomatillo, Wasabi, Watercress, Zucchini
Blue and Purple Foods
Blue Grapes, Blue and Purple Potatoes, Blueberries, Dried Plums, Plums, Eggplant, Pomegranates, Elderberries, Juniper Berries, Kelp (Seaweed), Purple Belgian Endive, Purple Cabbage, Purple Figs
White: Cauliflower, Coconut, Garlic, Ginger, Green Onions, Scallions, Horseradish, Jicama, Kohlrabi, Leeks, Millet, Mushrooms, Onions, Parsnips, Quinoa, Shallots, Soy Products, Sunflower Seeds, Tofu, Turnips, White Beans, White Corn, White Sesame Seeds
Black: Black Beans, Black Cherries, Black Currants, Black Mushrooms, Black Olives, Black Quinoa, Black Raspberry, Black Rice, Black Sesame Seeds, Black Soybeans, Blackberries, Boysenberries, Prunes, Raisins, Seaweeds, Tamari (Soy Sauce)
Wellness News employs adults with "Special Needs" (Cerebral Palsy, Autism, Down Syndrome, Muscular Dystrophy). Many of the photographs are available for purchase with the proceeds going to special needs adults. Contact Dr. Sandra Frank for additional information (firstname.lastname@example.org).
Autumn is the perfect time to add pumpkin to one of America’s favorite desserts. Cheesecake is a sweet dessert with a mixture of fresh soft cheese, cream cheese or cottage cheese, eggs and sugar on a crust made from crushed graham crackers, crushed cookies, pastry or sponge cake. Cheesecakes can be prepared baked or unbaked, flavored and are often served topped with fruit, fruit sauce, chocolate or whipped cream.
Iodine Deficiency - Interview with Prof. Zimmermann (Zürich}
Iodine is an essential element for healthy neurological and endocrine development. A lack of iodine in the diet may lead to mental challenges, goiter, or thyroid disease. Dependent upon the severity of the deficiency, a lack of iodine can cause a significant delay in mental development, something that can be particularly detrimental if it occurs in childhood. According to the World Health Organization in 2007, almost 2 billion people worldwide were suffering from a lack of iodine in their diets, a third of which were children and young people. Iodine deficiency is a relatively simple affliction to correct, however much of the population continues to go untreated.
Iodine is needed for the normal metabolism of cells. Metabolism is the process of converting food into energy. Humans need iodine for normal thyroid function, and for the production of thyroid hormones.
Iodized salt is table salt with iodine added. It is the main food source of iodine.
Seafood is naturally rich in iodine. Cod, sea bass, haddock, and perch are good sources.
Kelp is the most common vegetable-seafood that is a rich source of iodine.
Dairy products also contain iodine.
Other good sources are plants grown in iodine-rich soil.
Recommendations The best way to get the daily requirement of essential vitamins is to eat a balanced diet that contains a variety of foods from the food guide plate.
A 1/4 teaspoon of iodized table salt provides 95 micrograms of iodine. A 6-ounce portion of ocean fish provides 650 micrograms of iodine. Most people are able to meet the daily recommendations by eating seafood, iodized salt, and plants grown in iodine-rich soil. When buying salt make sure it is labeled "iodized."
The Food and Nutrition Board at the Institute of Medicine recommends the following dietary intake for iodine:
Infants 0 - 6 months: 110 micrograms per day (mcg/day) 7 - 12 months: 130 mcg/day
Adolescents and Adults Males age 14 and older: 150 mcg/day Females age 14 and older: 150 mcg/day
Specific recommendations depend on age, gender, and other factors (such as pregnancy). Women who are pregnant or producing breast milk (lactating) need higher amounts. Ask your health care provider which amount is best for you.
The National Osteoporosis Foundation (NOF) is the leading consumer and community-focused health organization dedicated to the prevention of osteoporosis and broken bones, the promotion of strong bones for life and the reduction of human suffering through programs of public and clinician awareness, education, advocacy, and research. Established in 1984, NOF is the nation's leading voluntary health organization solely dedicated to osteoporosis and bone health.
Osteoporosis is a major public health threat for an estimated 44 million Americans. Of the 10 million Americans estimated to already have osteoporosis, eight million are women and two million are men.
What can you do to protect your bones? Osteoporosis and the broken bones it can cause are not part of normal aging. Osteoporosis prevention should begin in childhood and continue throughout life. 1. Get enough calcium and vitamin D and eat a well-balanced diet. 2. Engage in regular exercise. 3. Eat foods that are good for bone health, such as fruits and vegetables. 4. Avoid smoking and limit alcohol to 2-3 drinks per day.
What Women Need to Know
Females are at a higher risk of developing osteoporosis and broken bones.
• Of the estimated 10 million Americans with osteoporosis, about eight million or 80% are women.
• Approximately one in two women over age 50 will break a bone because of osteoporosis.
• A woman's risk of breaking a hip is equal to her combined risk of breast, uterine and ovarian cancer.
There are multiple reasons why women are more like to get osteoporosis than men, including:
• Women tend to have smaller, thinner bones than men.
• Estrogen, a hormone in women decreases sharply when women reach menopause, which can cause bone loss. This is why the chance of developing osteoporosis increases as women reach menopause.
Are You at Risk for Developing Osteoporosis?
Uncontrollable Risk Factors
• Being over age 50.
• Being Female.
• Family History.
• Low Body Weight/Being Small and Thin.
• Broken Bones or Height Loss.
Controllable Risk Factors
• Not Getting Enough Calcium and Vitamin D.
• Not Eating Enough Fruits and Vegetables.
• Getting Too Much Protein, Sodium, and Caffeine.
• Having an Inactive Lifestyle.
• Drinking too much alcohol.
• Losing Weight.
There are also medications and diseases that can cause bone loss and increase your risk of osteoporosis.
Calcium and Vitamin D Getting enough calcium and vitamin D are essential to building stronger, denser bones early in life and to keep bones strong and healthy later in life. Calcium and vitamin D are the two most important nutrients for bone health. Calcium-Rich Food Sources Dairy products, such as low-fat and non-fat milk, yogurt and cheese are high in calcium. Certain green vegetables and other foods contain calcium in smaller amounts. Some juices, breakfast foods, soymilk, cereals, snacks, and bread have calcium that has been added. Vitamin D Sources There are three ways to get vitamin D: • Sunlight • Food • Supplements
Three Steps to Unbreakable Bones
You’re never too young or too old to improve the health of your bones. Osteoporosis prevention should begin in childhood. But it shouldn't stop there. Whatever your age, the habits you adopt now can affect your bone health for the rest of your life. Now is the time to take action. Resources and References. To learn more about Osteoporosis, please visit the following Foundations. World Osteoporosis Day International Osteoporosis Foundation
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
Maintain a healthy weight; it will decrease your risk of heart disease and other problems.
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.
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.
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.
Wear lightweight and layered clothes. Body temperature fluctuates from hot to cold.
Keep a cold glass of water by your side. Due to hot flashes and excessive sweating, it is important to stay hydrated.
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