Serving Size: 1½ cups | Serves 6
2 teaspoons vegetable oil
1 cup chopped onions
1 cup sliced fresh white mushrooms (optional)
1 clove garlic, minced
1 15-ounce can diced tomatoes
3 14-ounce cans low-sodium chicken broth
1 10.75-ounce can reduced-sodium cream of chicken soup
1 cup uncooked instant
2 cups chopped broccoli
2 cups chopped cooked
1/2 teaspoon freshly
Heat oil in large saucepan over medium-high heat.
Add onions, mushrooms, and minced garlic (if using); cook, stirring often, until onion is tender, about 5 minutes.
Add tomatoes, broth, soup, and rice. Cover and cook until rice is nearly tender, 15 to 20 minutes.
Stir in the broccoli and turkey; return to boil.
Reduce heat and simmer, partially covered, until broccoli is tender and turkey is heated through, about 5 minutes.
Remove from heat; stir in pepper.
Nutrition information per serving: 310 calories, 7g total fat, 2g saturated fat, 0g trans fat, 40mg cholesterol, 510mg sodium, 40g total carbohydrate, 4g fiber, 5g sugar, 23g protein
Prebiotics and probiotics are considered “nutrition boosters”that are naturally present in everyday foods. Although there are prebiotic and probiotic supplements available, those found naturally in food are more readily digested and absorbed.
Prebiotics are natural, nondigestible food components linked to promoting the growth of “good” bacteria in your gut. Prebiotics help good bacteria grow in your gut and might also help your body better absorb calcium.
Probiotics are actual live cultures of “good” bacteria that are naturally found in your gut. These help balance or grow the bacteria you need in your gut. Probiotics may help enhance immunity and overall health, especially intestinal health. Probiotics have been used to treat irritable bowel syndrome, to lower lactose intolerance symptoms, and to prevent some allergy symptoms; however, the benefits vary person-to-person.
Try to include both prebiotics and probiotics in meals and snacks since they work together to restore and improve gut health. For example, enjoy a cup of yogurt with a banana at breakfast or top sautéed asparagus with melted aged cheese for dinner.
For a more extensive review of prebiotics and probiotics, register to view the 2010 Current Issues in Nutrition webinar, “The Good Gut Bugs: Prebiotics and Probiotics.”
healthy living, nutrition
High-intensity workouts such as CrossFit are popular workouts, but are they for everyone? CrossFit combines gymnastics, endurance exercises, speed training, and strength training into one intense and short workout called workout of the day. These exercises are done with very short breaks in between. There is limited research about the safety of CrossFit in comparison to other types of exercise.
According to John Porcari, PhD, head of the University of Wisconsin–La Crosse Clinical Exercise Physiology program, CrossFit is safe for an active person but may not be safe for a 45-year-old with heart disease risks. Dr. Porcari adds, “We’ve seen with a lot of these workouts people go flat-out as fast as they can, but then their form falls apart. You really need to be technically correct with a lot of these exercises or else you’re going to get hurt.”
Take these steps to make sure you stay injury free:
1. Consult a health care professional before starting a workout routine if you are not physically active.
2. Find a certified personal trainer who can teach you proper techniques. Ask about their credentials and references, and look for a trainer that is concerned about form and safety. Certifications to look for include NSCA, ACE, ACSM, and NASM.
3. Don’t overexert yourself, watch your form, and gradually increase the intensity of your workout.
A 2013 study identified the six germiest items in the kitchen. These items were found to have pathogens (disease-causing agents) on them that can cause someone, especially children, pregnant women, and older adults, to become ill. Risk of illness can be lowered by using the cleaning tips below.
||How to Decrease Pathogens
||salmonella, E. coli, yeast, and mold
||Handheld: Wash in hot soapy water, rinse, and air dry after each use.
Electric: Using a clean cloth, wash the cutter, feed gear, and magnet with hot soapy water. Rinse with a wet, clean cloth.
|Vegetable drawer of refrigerator
||salmonella, listeria, yeast, and mold
||Wash in hot soapy water, rinse and air dry after each use.
||salmonella, E. coli, yeast, and mold
||Dishwasher Safe: Wash blender in the dishwasher.
Not Dishwasher Safe: Wash in hot soapy water, rinse, and dry before reassembling.
||E. coli, yeast, and mold
||Wash in hot soapy water, paying special attention to the area where the handle joins the spatula.
|Refrigerator meat compartment
||salmonella, E. coli, yeast, and mold
||Use a clean cloth and wash the bin with a mild detergent mixed with warm water. Thoroughly rinse with warm, clean water and dry.
|Food storage container with rubber seal
||salmonella, yeast, and mold
||Wash in hot soapy water, paying special attention to any grooves where the cover attaches to the container. Then rinse and dry.
|General Safe Food Practices:
• Always wash your hands with soap and warm water for at least 10–15 seconds.
• Avoid cross-contamination by storing ready-to-eat foods on top of uncooked foods, such as meat, to avoid raw juices dripping on other foods.
food safety, healthy living
(make a day before serving)
- 1 unpeeled cucumber, washed and sliced lengthwise
- 1 teaspoon garlic, peeled and minced (about 1–2 cloves)
- 2 containers (6 ounces each) plain Greek yogurt
- 1 teaspoon dried dill and/or fresh mint
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 1 Tablespoon olive oil
- Use a spoon to scrape out cucumber seeds. Dice the cucumber into small pieces or shred using a grater.
- Spread cucumber on top of a paper towel. Roll up the towel and squeeze to remove excess liquid. Transfer cucumber to a large bowl.
- Add the remaining ingredients and mix. Cover and refrigerate until served.
- 6 whole wheat pita pockets (6” each)
- Cooking spray
- 1/2 teaspoon spice (e.g., dried rosemary, basil, cumin, cayenne pepper)
- Preheat oven to 400oF.
- Spray the pita with oil, cut in 8 wedges, and sprinkle with seasoning.
- Toast chips 4–5 minutes, then turn and toast 1–2 minutes more. (Watch carefully at the end because they can quickly turn brown.)
Recipe from SpendSmart EatSmart. Find more recipes at www.extension.iastate.edu/foodsavings.
Supermarkets throw out $47 billion worth of food each year. Much of this food is still safe to eat. The idea is to offer food to people at low prices and reduce the amount of food wasted. This has led to new businesses opening around the United States that provide groceries at a discounted price. These food items are safe to eat,but one of the following applies:
- They are past their sell-by date (end of store “shelf life” but still safe to eat).
- They are close to their use-by date (found on shelf-stable products; indicatesabsolute best quality when unopened).
- They have minor imperfections (e.g., slightly bruised produce, slightlydented cans).
- They are from overstocks.
Why is repurposing of these foods gaining popularity? Foods that are past their sell-by date or close to their use-by date can still be safe to eat and therefore can be used to combat hunger. Currently, 1 in 8 or 11.9% of Iowans are foodinsecure, meaning that at some time during the year they lacked access to safe and nutritious food. This leads to lower intakes of nutrient-rich foods, more health problems, and loss of independence. People who are food insecure do not receivethe nutrients needed to remain healthy and active. Not having access to safe and nutritious foods in midlife and older adulthood can make completing daily tasks (e.g., cleaning, bathing, etc.) more challenging. In addition, getting a foodborne illness can have long term health consequences. In children, a lack of propernutrition is associated with increased behavior problems, school absenteeism, difficulty concentrating, and fatigue.
The Iowa organization Table to Table is working to reduce food waste and foodinsecurity. Table to Tablecollects edible food fromdonors and distributes thesefood items to those in needthrough agencies that serve the hungry, homeless, and at-risk populations. Since 1996,Table to Table has rescuedabout 12 million pounds offood from grocery stores,restaurants, schools, andother food operations. To learnmore about Table to Table, visit www.table2table.org/.
food safety, healthy living
You don’t have to be a marathoner to reap the health benefits of running. A recent Iowa State University study, published in the Journal of the American College of Cardiology, found that running for just 5 or 10 minutes a day can reduce your risk of heart disease.
Researchers followed more than 55,000 adults for 15 years to measure the benefits of running, according to DC (Duck-chul) Lee, lead author of the study and an assistant professor of kinesiology at Iowa State University. Lee stated “runners were 45 percent less likely to die from heart disease or stroke than non-runners, regardless of their running distance, duration or speed.”
“Most people say they don’t have time to exercise…but I think most everyone can find 5 to 10 minutes per day to run for the health benefits,” Lee said. For more about the study, watch the video at www.news.iastate.edu/news/2014/07/28/runningmortality.
Looking for other quick ways to get fit? Check out ISU Extension’s “Quick Fit,” a program of exercises you can complete in only 15 minutes a day, 5 days a week: store.extension.iastate.edu/Product/EDC247.
When making a bag or box lunch for yourself or your child, don’t forget to play it safe! Food that travels from one place to another is likely to stay outside of the refrigerator for more time than the food you serve at home. Therefore, the bacteria that cause foodborne illness have a better chance of growing rapidly in a bag lunch.
Use the Right Container
Gone are the days of a “brown bag” lunch. Choose insulated lunch bags and boxes to keep cold food cold. The lunch container should have enough space so that you can always fit in a reusable freezer pack or a plastic bottle filled with ice. Make sure the bag or box can easily be washed daily with hot soap and water. A dishwasher-safe lunchbox or a bag that can be laundered is ideal. Wash lunch boxes and other lunch containers soon after coming home.
Wash, Wash, Wash!
Wash hands thoroughly for at least 20 seconds with soap and hot water before preparing any food for the lunchbox. Make sure that any utensil that comes in contact with the food has been thoroughly washed and sanitized. When eating away from home, many people forget to wash hands before eating. This allows germs the perfect chance to transfer to a sandwich or apple. Make it easy for you and your child to eat with clean hands by including hand sanitizer or wipes in the lunch bag.
For more ideas on protecting your family’s health when packing lunches, use the handout titled What’s for Lunch? It’s in the Bag! available at store.extension.iastate.edu/Product/PM3026.
Sandwiches are a packed lunch staple. Homemade bread makes a sandwich special. Try this easy-to-make, tasty, bread recipe. Serves 16
- 1 1/4 cups nonfat milk, lukewarm (100–110°F)
- 1/4 cup orange or
- apple juice
- 3 tablespoons honey
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1 packet instant yeast
- (about 2 1/4 teaspoons)
- 2 cups whole wheat flour
- 1 1/4 cups all-purpose white flour
- Grease sides of an 8.5” x 4.5” loaf pan with nonstick spray.
- Combine milk, juice, and honey
- in a bowl.
- Add the remaining ingredients. Beat vigorously for 3 minutes. Dough will be thick. Scoop the dough into the pan. Cover pan with clean towel. Let the dough rise in a warm place for 45–75 minutes, until almost double
- in size.
- When dough is almost doubled, preheat oven to 350°F.
- Remove towel. Bake bread for about 30 minutes. Dough will pull away from sides of pan when bread is done. Cool 30 minutes before slicing.
Nutrition information per slice: 110 calories; 0 g fat; 0 mg cholesterol; 23 g carbohydrates; 4 g protein; 2 g fiber; 150 mg sodium
From Spend Smart Eat Smart at www.extension.iastate.edu/foodsavings/.
If you have a child in school, you may have already heard about the new “Smart Snack” guidelines going into effect this year in Iowa schools that participate in the federal school lunch program. The 2010 Healthy, Hunger-Free Kids’ Act updated the nutrition standards for snacks and beverages sold in school vending machines, via a la carte sales in the cafeteria, and at school stores and some fundraisers.
The new “Smart Snack” guidelines are intended to limit the availability of high-energy, low-nutrition foods like sugary beverages, candy, chips, and snack cakes.
The guidelines require snacks to:
- Be a whole grain, fruit, vegetable, dairy product, and/or protein food;
- Provide at least 10% of the daily value of potassium, calcium, fiber, or vitamin D;
- Contain no more than 200 calories and 230 mg sodium;
- Provide no more than 35% of its calories as fat and no more than 10% as saturated fat (exceptions: nutrient-rich snacks such as nuts, seeds, and low-fat cheese); and
- Be no more than 35% sugar by weight.
The below table shows the difference in snacks allowed before and after the “Smart Snack” guidelines.
School Snacks FAQs
Will I break the law if I put a double-fudge brownie in my child’s or grandchild’s lunch? Although it is important that both schools and caregivers promote healthy eating for the well-being of children, the standards do not apply to packed lunches.
Will cupcakes be forbidden at classroom parties? Nope. These rules govern only food sold to children in school, not food that is given to them free.
How can I find out more about the new Smart Snacks standards? For more information on the USDA Smart Snacks standards, visit www.fns.usda.gov/school-meals/smart-snacks-school.