Thursday, May 13, 2021

National Fruit Cocktail Day - Variety and Nutrition

National Fruit Cocktail Day

1. A mixture of sliced or diced fruits.
2. A mixture of chopped fruit served as an appetizer, often chilled; tends to be less sweet than a fruit salad.
3. A mixture of fresh or preserved fruits cut into pieces and served as an appetizer or dessert; also called a fruit cup.
4. Canned fruit cocktail and canned fruit salad are similar, but fruit salad contains larger fruit while fruit cocktail is diced.

Canned Fruit Cocktail can be purchased in the following packing mediums:
Extra heavy

Fruit Juice and Water
Fruit Juice
Artificially Sweetened

The USDA product sheets1 state canned "Fruit cocktail" must contain pears, grapes, cherries, peaches, and pineapples, otherwise it cannot be called fruit cocktail. It should contain fruits in not less nor more than the following percentages:
30% to 50% diced peaches, any yellow variety
25% to 45% diced pears, any variety
6% to 16% diced pineapple, any variety
6% to 20% whole grapes, any seedless variety
2% to 6% cherry halves, any light sweet or artificial red variety

A simple fruit salad or fruit kabob makes a healthy dish and easy to prepare.

Wednesday, May 12, 2021

National Osteoporosis Awareness and Prevention Month

May is National Osteoporosis Awareness and Prevention Month. 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.

The drastic consequence of osteoporosis is visible in the lives of the millions of sufferers worldwide. Researchers today know a lot about how you can protect your bones throughout your life. Getting enough calcium, vitamin D, and regular exercise is important for your bones.

Feed Your Bones Today

Fact and Fiction about Osteoporosis

What You Need To Know About Milk

Nutrition and Health: Osteoporosis
by The Dairy and Nutrition Council of Indiana and Indiana Dairy Farmers

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.

Food Allergy Awareness Week

The Food Allergy and Anaphylaxis Network (FAAN) was founded in 1991 and is the world’s largest nonprofit organization providing information about food allergy to the media, schools, health professionals, the food industry, pharmaceutical companies, and government officials, as well as the food-allergic community.

FAAN’s mission is to raise public awareness, to provide advocacy and education, and to advance research on behalf of all those affected by food allergy and anaphylaxis.

Respect Every Bite

Food Allergy Bullying: It's Not a Joke

In 1997, FAAN created Food Allergy Awareness Week to educate others about food allergies, a potentially life-threatening medical condition.

FAAN’s annual programs, include Food Allergy Awareness Week, Food Allergy Conferences, Mariel C. Furlong Awards for Making a Difference, Food Allergy News for Kids Poster Contest, Teen Summit, Trick-or-Treat for Food Allergy, Walk for Food Allergy, Kids’ Congress on Capitol Hill.

For further information on FAAN, visit:
YouTube Channel: FAANPAL

Contact Information:
The Food Allergy and Anaphylaxis Network
(800) 929-4040

National Hummus Day - Recipes and Nutrition Profile

Hummus versus Mayonnaise
If you use one Tablespoon of Hummus,
instead of one Tablespoon of Mayonnaise
You will save 74 calories!


Hummus with Peppers and Cucumbers Wrap

Camera f/6.3; 1/100; ISO 100; light - natural. Nutrition Info. 131 Calories; 5g Protein; 12g Carbohydrates; 4g Dietary Fiber; 4g Total Sugars; 5g Fat; 0 mg Cholesterol; 446 IU Vitamin A; 96mg Vitamin C; 206mg Sodium

Hummus and Lentil Pizza


1/2 sandwich thin
1 Tbsp Hummus
2 Tbsp Caponata (diced eggplant with sun-dried tomatoes
1/2 oz Goat Cheese
2 Tbsp Lentil Salad

Nutrition Information.
165 Calories; 7 g Protein; 19 g Carbohydrates; 3 g Dietary Fiber; 9 g Fat
6 mg Cholesterol

Perfect for breakfast, snack or a light lunch.

National Mental Health Month
The Relationship Between Nutrition and Depression

Understanding Nutrition, Depression and Mental Illnesses,   T. S. Sathyanarayana Rao, M. R. Asha,1 B. N. Ramesh,2 and K. S. Jagannatha Rao2 (To review the entire article, click the following link.)

Nutrition and food patterns play a key role in the onset, severity, and duration of depression. These may include poor appetite, binge eating, overeating, anorexia, skipping meals, and a desire for sweet foods. Nutritional neuroscience is an emerging discipline shedding light on the fact that nutritional factors are intertwined with human cognition, behavior, and emotions. 

The dietary intake pattern of the different populations throughout the world reflects they are often deficient in many nutrients, such as essential vitamins, minerals, and omega-3 fatty acids. Studies have indicated that daily supplements of vital nutrients are often effective in reducing patients' symptoms. Supplements containing amino acids have also been found to reduce symptoms, as they are converted to neurotransmitters which in turn alleviate depression and other mental health problems. When we take a close look at the diet of depressed people, an interesting observation is that their nutrition is far from adequate. They make poor food choices and selecting foods that might actually contribute to depression

The most common nutritional deficiencies seen in patients with mental disorders are of omega–3 fatty acids, B vitamins, minerals, and amino acids that are precursors to neurotransmitters. Accumulating evidence from demographic studies indicates a link between high fish consumption and low incidence of mental disorders; this lower incidence rate being the direct result of omega–3 fatty acid intake. The majority of Asian diets are usually also lacking in fruits and vegetables, which further leads to mineral and vitamin deficiencies.

Carbohydrates have been found to affect mood and behavior. Eating a meal rich in carbohydrates activates the release of insulin in the body. Insulin helps let blood sugar into cells where it can be used for energy and the production of tryptophan to the brain. Consumption of diets low in carbohydrates tends to generate depression due to the lack of production of serotonin and tryptophan.

Protein intake affects brain functioning and mental health. Many of the neurotransmitters in the brain are made from amino acids. If there is a lack of amino acids, this can associate with low mood and aggression in patients. The excessive buildup of the amino acids phenylalanine may lead to brain damage and mental retardation this disease is called phenylketonuria.

As more resource is collected the relationship between nutrition and depression are unquestionably linked. Mood improvement has been associated with improved vitamin B2 and B6 status. Thiamine is linked to cognitive performance particularly in the older population. Clinical trials have indicated Vitamin B12 may delay the onset of signs of dementia. 

A study observing patients with depression and low blood folate levels has identified a strong predisposing factor of poor outcome with antidepressant therapy. It is not clear yet whether poor nutrition, as a symptom of depression, causes folate deficiency or primary folate deficiency produces depression and its symptoms.

Another relationship between diet and depression involves old age. Related factors include unintentional weight loss; often linked to increased morbidity and premature death; a reduction in taste and smell, poor dentition, the use of medications that may depress the appetite. 


Mental Health America 500 Montgomery Street, Suite 820 Alexandria, VA. 22314 Phone (703) 684.7722

Call the 24-hour, toll-free confidential National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-TALK (8255) or go to

National Animal Disaster Preparedness Day

Build a Pet Survival Kit

Food. At least a 3 day supply in an airtight, waterproof container.

Water. At least 3 days of water specifically for your pets.

Medicines and medical records.

Important documents. Registration information, adoption papers, and vaccination documents. Talk to your veterinarian about microchipping and enrolling your pet in a recovery database.

First aid kit. Cotton bandage rolls, bandage tape, and scissors; antibiotic ointment; flea and tick prevention; latex gloves, isopropyl alcohol, and saline solution. Including a pet first aid reference book.

Collar or harness with ID tag, rabies tag, and a leash.

Crate or pet carrier. The carrier should be large enough for your pet to stand, turn around and lie down.

Sanitation. Pet litter and litter box if appropriate, newspapers, paper towels, plastic trash bags, and household chlorine bleach.

A picture of you and your pet together.

National Salsa Month - Spice Up Your Health with Salsa

Salsa is a sauce typical of Mexican cuisine. It is also known as salsa fresca, hot salsa, or salsa picante. Salsa is often tomato-based and includes ingredients such as onions, chilies, and herbs. It is typically spicy, ranging from mild to extremely hot. It is used as dips.

Spice Up Your Health with Salsa

1.  A good source of Vitamin C. Salsa is traditionally made with Vitamin C rich foods such as tomatoes, onion, jalapenos, and lime juice. Vitamin C is important for collagen production, protecting against cell damage, boosting the immune system, fighting infections, and preventing gum disease. 

2.  Promotes a Healthy Heart. As a plant-based food, it's naturally low in cholesterol. Salsa is also an excellent source of potassium, which helps to reduce blood pressure and regulate fluid balance. To get the maximum nutritional benefit, it is best to eat fresh salsa instead of canned alternatives, which can be very high in sodium.

3.  Contains Cancer-Fighting Properties. Most salsas are made with tomatoes and onions - two foods rich in anti-cancer fighting phytochemicals. Tomatoes are an excellent source of lycopene, an antioxidant linked to a decreased risk of prostate, urinary, intestinal and some stomach cancers. Onions are a good source of quercetin another, anti-inflammatory antioxidant. The combination of these ingredients makes salsa a powerful cancer-fighting food!

4. Low in Calories. Salsa is a waist watcher favorite topping. Not only is it low in calories, but it's sure to add flavor and spice to whatever you desire. Two tablespoons of salsa contain less than 15 calories and can be enjoyed liberally on anything from salad to eggs to chicken, and even beans. The possibilities are endless! 

Different Ways to Enjoy Salsa

• Salsa can be made year-round with a variety of fresh fruits or vegetables.
• Turn your abundance of tomatoes into homemade salsa and use your own canning process. 
• Add salsa to eggs or mix in a morning burrito.
• Transform avocado toast into a spiced up version by adding salsa
• Reduce calorie intake by replacing traditional salad dressing or creamy sauces with salsa.
• Spice up dinner by adding salsa to your favorite chicken or fish entrees.
• Add lemon, orange or pineapple juice to a fresh salsa recipe to keep f resh. 
• To maximize the taste and flavor profile, cover and refrigerate for at least one hour before serving.
• Serve safely by not letting the salsa sit at room temperature for more than two hours. And, avoid adding fresh salsa to dip or salsa that has been sitting out.
• Fresh salsa is best if used within three to four days.
• Have fun with your salsa creations! There is no right or wrong way to make salsa, it’s all about mixing fresh ingredients, herbs, and spices and sharing with others

by Mary Claire Britton Cooking Light  

1. Salsa
2. 40+ Fresh Ways to Update Homemade Salsa, CookingLight

Monday, May 10, 2021

National Shrimp Day - Nutrition and Recipe Ideas

2. Food Network, Healthy Shrimp Recipes
3. Cooking Light, Top-Rated Shrimp Recipes

Clean Up Your Room Day

I always considered myself an organized person, but sometime in the 1980’s I started saving everything from – old lesson plans; grocery receipts (from recipe testing); scrap papers with numbers (no names); clothes (from size 2 to 24); my son’s artwork; Journals; textbooks, VHS; cassettes; broken phones; wires.. the list is too long to include everything here. 

I started to go through my collection of “stuff” to see what I had and what I no longer needed. I knew this would be a massive undertaking; this was over 30 years of my life collecting dust in boxes, files, drawers, cupboards, closets, the garage and the attic. In just 3 months, I had thrown out over 15 large garbage bags of junk and still did not feel I had made a dent. 

This week, I decided to focus only on one part of the house. I chose my office which is connected to my bedroom. I would not be going through my clothes yet, but it was on the to-do list. I gathered all the boxes from my office, bedroom, under-the-bed, cupboards, shelves, draws, filing cabinets, and the hidden closet. I placed everything in my den to use as my staging area. This was also the only place in my home that still had a record player. I thought while I’m going through this massive amount of paper, I would listen to some of my old favorites before I donated (or threw out) my albums. I have to check to see if they are recyclable.

Who Is NAPO?
The National Association of Professional Organizers (NAPO) is a group of about 4,200 professional organizers dedicated to helping individuals and businesses bring order and efficiency to their lives. Their vision is to have the world recognize the value of organizing and turn to NAPO as the leading organizing authority. Their mission is to develop, lead, and promote professional organizers and the organizing industry. In addition to serving professional organizers, they aim to help consumers and those interested in becoming professional organizers.

Get Rid of Clutter

Benefits of Organization
Organization improves one’s work, life, financial situation, and frees up time and space

10 Benefits of Getting Organized
1. Stress levels will go down and there will be less chaos and more relaxed life.
2. Efficiency gets projects done quicker with less time wasted on looking for things and being able to make quicker decisions.
3. An organized person is able to fit in time for friends, family members, and helping out in the community.
4. Getting organized helps you feel better about your environment and you are more likely to invite people into your environment without embarrassment.
5. You'll be a better role model for your children.
6. Get organized and you'll have more than enough time to exercise and cook healthy meals for yourself and your family.
7. An organized environment also tends to be a much cleaner environment.
8. An organized person gives a much better business impression than someone who can't find a phone number, has an office piled with cardboard boxes or is always late for appointments.
9. When you're organized, you'll always know what you have, before you buy more.
10. Organized people find ways to eliminate tasks that aren't necessary and to streamline those that are taking too much time. This leaves plenty of time to work on achieving your goals. 

“Organization brings a level of peace and tranquility to your life,” says Jennifer Snyder of Neat as a Pin! Organizing Experts. Snyder also advises people not to keep things around “just in case.” 

“Clutter makes noise, it makes energetic noise. It sucks your energy from you.” Clutter also attracts dust and pests. “Clutter is basically sending a message there’s something in your life that you need to get at. 

Snyder organizes for no more than four hours at a time, to give her clients time to adjust to the improvements. “It didn’t get that way overnight. It’s a lifestyle change. You’re changing the way you think about things and becoming more emotionally healthy,” she said. 

What to do with castoffs. Once space is organized, there will be bags of items to discard. Itemized list of donations to receive tax deductions, and discarding things properly, such as erasing computer hard drives before dropping them off at a donation center.

Being better organized can provide energy, time 
and happiness. 

Get the Children Involved

National Association of Professional Organizers 

WebMD. 10 Ways to Cut Clutter in Your Home 

A Final Message.

I read that one should take a photo of your child's art work and then the boxes of school work can be thrown away. I had one problem - my son. As I was admiring the years of his efforts, he came by to see how I was doing. With a look of shock and horror - Jake told me how could I throw away his work? "I made it for you, mom."

So here is the photo. I ended up keeping his cherished work. I guess I'm not ready to get rid of everything yet.

National Women’s Checkup Day, a part of
National Women's Health Week

National Women’s Health Week is organized by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services’ Office on Women’s Health (OWH). The goal is to empower women to make their health a top priority. 

There are some women who are so busy caring for their families and others, neglect to care for themselves. During National Women’s Health Week remind your wife, mother, grandmother, daughter, sister, aunt, and/or girlfriend to take steps to improve their health and prevent disease.

The annual National Women’s Health Week kicks off on Mother’s Day, Dedicate this day to visit or make an appointment with your healthcare professional. Schedule a check-up. Prevention and early detection are crucial to one’s health. To learn more about National Women's Health Week visit the following links:

Why is it important for women to participate in National Women's Checkup Day?

It is important for women to get regular checkups because screening tests, such as mammograms and Pap tests, can find diseases early when they are easier to treat. Some women need certain screening tests earlier, or more often than others. Screenings and routine care can help women lower their risks of many health conditions, including heart disease.

How can women participate in this important event?
Women can participate in National Women’s Checkup Day by:
Contacting their current health care professional to schedule a checkup and get important screenings on National Women’s Checkup Day.

Discussing with their health care professionals which screenings and tests are right for them when they should have them, and how often.

For information about participating in National Women’s Checkup Day and other National Women’s Health Week activities, visit the National Women’s Health Week website at 

Women's Health Month

The information provided here is from the National Women's Health Information Center (NWHIC)

Saturday, May 8, 2021

Mother's Day Gifts with
a lot of Love

Healthy and Caring Mother's Day Gifts 

Mothers are special. You can create a gift she will cherish forever without spending any money or very little. Some of my favorite gifts have been handmade.

Gift Ideas for Mom with Zero Calories
Photos or Homemade Cards
Nutrition Consult with a Registered Dietitian
Spa Day or Massage
Online Video
Flowers and/or Balloons
Gift Baskets
Vouchers for:
  1. Go food shopping for a month. 

  2. Wash mom's car. 
  3. Clean the kitchen for a week.
  4. Treat mom to a movie.

Favorite Mother's Day Videos

Anne Geddes pictures to 
Celine Dions song 'A mothers Prayer'

The Mom Song 

I Love You Mommy

The History of Mother's Day

Friday, May 7, 2021

National Barrier Awareness Day - Barriers to Health Care

Barriers to Health Care

  • “After you turn into an adult with cerebral palsy, there is little medical support. Most of the studies, surgeries, and what have you are done with children with cerebral palsy. I walk into a doctor’s office and say I have cerebral palsy and get “that look” from the doctor. The look most adults with CP have seen numerous times in their life, the look of “Oh crap, I am going to have to Google this when I get home.” - Mary Catherine

People with disabilities encounter a range of barriers when they attempt to access health care including the following.

Prohibitive costs
Affordability of health services and transportation are two main reasons why people with disabilities do not receive needed health care in low-income countries - 32-33% of non-disabled people are unable to afford health care compared to 51-53% of people with disabilities.

Limited availability of services
The lack of appropriate services for people with disabilities is a significant barrier to health care. For example, research in Uttar Pradesh and Tamil Nadu states of India found that after the cost, the lack of services in the area was the second most significant barrier to using health facilities.

Physical barriers
Uneven access to buildings (hospitals, health centers), inaccessible medical equipment, poor signage, narrow doorways, internal steps, inadequate bathroom facilities, and inaccessible parking areas create barriers to health care facilities. For example, women with mobility difficulties are often unable to access breast and cervical cancer screening because examination tables are not height-adjustable and mammography equipment only accommodates women who are able to stand.

Inadequate skills and knowledge of health workers
People with disabilities were more than twice as likely to report finding health care provider skills inadequate to meet their needs, four times more likely to report being treated badly and nearly three times more likely to report being denied care.

Addressing barriers to health care
Governments can improve health outcomes for people with disabilities by improving access to quality, affordable health care services, which make the best use of available resources. As several factors interact to inhibit access to health care, reforms in all the interacting components of the health care system are required.

Policy and legislation
Assess existing policies and services, identify priorities to reduce health inequalities, and plan improvements for access and inclusion. Establish health care standards related to the care of persons with disabilities with enforcement mechanisms.

Service delivery
Provide a broad range of modifications and adjustments (reasonable accommodation) to facilitate access to health care services. For example, changing the physical layout of clinics to provide access for people with mobility difficulties or communicating health information in accessible formats such as Braille. Empower people with disabilities to maximize their health by providing information, training, and peer support. Promote community-based rehabilitation (CBR) to facilitate access for disabled people to existing services. Identify groups that require alternative service delivery models, for example, targeted services or care coordination to improve access to health care.

Human resources
Integrate disability education into undergraduate and continuing education for all healthcare professionals. Train community workers so that they can play a role in preventive health care services. Provide evidence-based guidelines for assessment and treatment.

WHO response

In order to improve access to health services for people with disabilities, promote strategies to ensure that people with disabilities are knowledgeable about their own health conditions, and that healthcare personnel support and protect the rights and dignity of persons with disabilities.

1. Access To Medical Care for Individuals With Mobility DisabilitiesU.S. Department of Health and Human Services Office for Civil Rights

Disability and Health, World Health Organization

Wednesday, May 5, 2021

Stay Hydrated - National Beverage Day and Drinking Water Week

Drink plenty of water, non-alcoholic and decaffeinated fluids. Our body needs water to keep cool. Persons who are on fluid restrictive diets or have a problem with fluid retention should consult a physician before increasing their consumption of fluids. Limit caffeinated beverages and do not drink alcoholic beverages. 

Staying hydrated is important, especially when the temperature rises or during increased physical activity. Try these easy ways to increase your fluid intake:

1. Carry a reusable water bottle. Keep it full.
2. Add flavor to your water, such as slices of lemon, lime, cucumber or strawberries. Herbal iced teas can be a great way to increase fluids.
3. Eat Fruit or Popsicle. You can get fluids from the foods you eat. Watermelon and cantaloupe have high water content. A 100% fruit juice pop provides fluids and is refreshing on a hot day.
4. Plan ahead. If you are going to be outside at a picnic or ball game, make sure to pack plenty of fluids

1. Drinking Water Week, American Water Works Association
2. Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics, Hydrate Right News

Dietitian Blog List