Tag Archives: Winter

Canned Food Month

Canned Food Month

It’s Canned Food Month, and canned ingredients can be key to having a versatile pantry that can help you whip up all kinds of dishes quickly, and they’re affordable!

First up is a super simple and light Pumpkin Mousse that’s like pie without the crust.

Pumpkin Mousse

 

Make the most of canned beans and tomatoes and pack in the winter veggies with homemade Minestrone Soup.

Minestrone Soup
Image and Recipe via Carl’s Bad Cravings

 

Hummus is a super simple dip that makes the most of canned chickpeas. Try these 4 flavors.

Homemade Hummus (four flavors)

 

Meal prep these Black Bean Breakfast Bowls for easy, savory breakfast all week long.

Black Bean Breakfast Bowls

 

Whip up this Lemony Lentil and Chickpea Salad with Radish and Herbs for a hearty lunch or side.

Lemony Lentil and Chickpea Salad with Radish and Herbs
Image and Recipe via Cookie and Kate

 

This Chipotle Ground Turkey Chili is the perfect meal to make out of your pantry’s canned goods.

Chipotle Ground Turkey Chili

 

You won’t believe this gorgeous Coconut Pineapple Cake is made with canned pineapple.

Coconut Pineapple Cake

Coconut Pineapple Cake

Winter Senior Games

Long View: Sack Those Winter Blues, Get Active at Winter Senior Games

When I was in high school, I had a crush on the hunky, curly-haired quarterback for the Iowa Hawkeyes, Chuck Long. Sigh, just saying his name takes me back to those days.

In my youth, sports of any kind ruled my world. Volleyball, softball, track and field, and basketball, I took a shot at all of them. I even earned a varsity letter for basketball in high school. I often say that the first thing God is going to let me do when I get to heaven is shoot the gap, slam through on the blind side, and sack the quarterback. But that quarterback will be someone I don’t like, like Tom Brady or Aaron Rogers, not Chuck.

Well, as it tends to happen, I grew up. I decided to become a Cyclone instead of a Hawkeye, got married, and raised a family. I stopped having crushes on college quarterbacks and started dreaming about minivans that could corner on a dime and the day my sons would stop taking swings at each other and just get in the car. Oh, and I went to work for Health Alliance, a company based in Champaign, IL, and full of Fighting Illini. Go figure. But I’ve always hung on to that love of sport. The body doesn’t always cooperate, but the heart is still alive and willing to give it a try.

February is a great month for all lovers of sport because Health Alliance is sponsoring the Winter Iowa Senior Games in the Quad Cities, and you are invited whether you’re an Illini, Hawkeye, Cyclone, or something else. You don’t need to be an Iowa resident to compete. In fact, competitors come from all over the United States. The only requirement is that you must be over 50 years old.

Still worried about the heart being more willing than the body? Don’t, everyone else is in the same boat because you compete with your own age group. Age groupings start at 50 and go up to over 90 years old. The playing field is even!

Registration is being taken for bowling, pickleball, swimming, table tennis, tennis, and all track and field events. Events will take place throughout the Quad Cities, but most will happen at Augustana’s PepsiCo Arena in Rock Island. Yes, that is an indoor track.

Here is the best part. Chuck Long runs the Iowa Sports Foundation, the sponsoring agency of the Iowa Senior Games! Sometimes he even comes out to run the 800 meters in his age group. Making one’s heart go pitter-patter is an aerobic exercise, don’t you know? Come out and have some fun and shake off those winter blues.

The Winter Iowa Senior Games will be held February 22 to 24 in the Quad Cities. Register for events at IowaSeniorGames.org or by calling 1-888-777-8881.

Reading this article too late for the Winter Games? The Eastern Iowa Senior Challenge happens in April in Cedar Rapids, and the Iowa Senior Games is later this summer in West Des Moines. Check their website for all available events and dates.

 

Lora Felger is a community and broker liaison at Health Alliance. She is the mother of 2 terrific boys, a world traveler, and a major Iowa State Cyclones fan.

Tacking Seasonal Affective Disorder

Understanding Seasonal Affective Disorder

Seasonal affective disorder, or SAD, is when you experience symptoms of depression as the seasons change. Most often, these feelings are tied to the fall and winter. But you can take charge to feel better during these months.

Seasonal Affective Disorder and Winter

 

Symptoms of winter-onset SAD include oversleeping, exhaustion, low energy, gaining weight, and appetite changes, like craving carbs and heavy foods.

Symptoms of Winter-Onset SAD

 

Symptoms of summer-onset SAD include trouble sleeping, agitation, anxiety, losing weight, and poor appetite.

Symptoms of Summer-Onset SAD

 

While doctors aren’t certain of the cause of seasonal affective disorder, some factors that contribute to it include how your biological clock, serotonin levels (which affect mood), and melatonin levels (which affect sleep patterns) are affected by reduced sunlight.

Factors Causing SAD

 

SAD is more common for those with depression, bipolar disorder, a family history of these conditions, and those living far from the equator with short days in the winter.

Risk of Seasonal Affective Disorder

 

Seasonal affective disorder can cause people to withdraw from their social circles, affect their performance in school or work, increase the risk of substance abuse, worsen other mental health issues (like anxiety), and in extreme cases, lead to suicidal thoughts and behavior.

Issues Caused by SAD

 

Treatment for this disorder can include light therapy, antidepressants, therapy, and relaxation techniques like tai chi, yoga, meditation, or art therapy. Talk to your doctor to find the right fit for you.

Treating Seasonal Affective Disorder

National Fresh Squeezed Juice Week

National Fresh Squeezed Juice Week

It’s National Fresh Squeezed Juice Week, and adding freshly squeezed juices to your diet can be a great way to get more vitamins and nutrients from fruits and veggies.

First up, Glowing Skin Green Juice sweetened by apple is great for staying hydrated.

Glowing Skin Green Juice

 

Make this Super Healthy Vegan Orange Julius at home for a healthy treat.

Super Healthy Vegan Orange Julius
Image and Recipe via Vegan Vigilante

 

This refreshing Anti-Inflammatory Juice will have you dreaming of warmer weather.

Fresh Anti-Inflammatory Juice

 

Beautiful pink Beet Ginger Detox Juice is perfect for sneaking more veggies into your kids’ diets.

http://www.theharvestkitchen.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/10/beet-juice-2-650x975.jpg
Image and Recipe via The Harvest Kitchen

 

Get your daily dose of Vitamin C with this green Fresh Kiwi-Grape Juice.

Fresh Kiwi-Grape Juice
Image and Recipe via Martha Stewart

 

Lighten up your lemon and feel like you’re at the spa with this Cleansing Cucumber Lemonade.

Cleansing Cucumber Lemonade

 

Help your immune system be prepared for winter colds with an extra dose of Vitamins A and C in Winter Vitamin-Boosting Juice.

Winter Vitamin Boosting Juice

Recipes High in Folic Acid

Recipes High in Folic Acid

We’re helping you eat a diet high in folate for National Folic Acid Awareness Week. These recipes high in folic acid are the perfect way to get more in your life.

First up is a Creamy Farro with Pesto, Asparagus, and Peas that can satisfy your pasta craving.

Creamy Farro with Pesto, Asparagus, and Peas

 

This warm and delicious Vegetarian Lentil Tortilla Soup is the perfect winter meal.

Vegetarian Lentil Tortilla Soup (Instant-Pot + Slow Cooker)

 

This light and tasty Green Salad with Oranges, Beets, and Avocado is packed with folate-rich foods.

Green Salad with Oranges, Beets & Avocado

 

Skip the takeout and make Chicken and Broccoli Stir Fry for a healthy night in.

Chicken and Broccoli Stir Fry
Image and Recipe via Dinner at the Zoo

 

Make easy Thai Style Papaya Salad Rolls for a light snack or appetizer.

Thai Style Papaya Salad Rolls
Image and Recipe via The Wanderlust Kitchen

 

This Spicy Black Bean Soup will hit spicy pregnancy cravings and help you get your folic acid.

Spicy Black Bean Soup
Image and Recipe via Little Spice Jar

 

Get out your grill pan to whip up this delicious Grilled Eggplant and Spinach Salad.

Grilled Eggplant and Spinach Salad
Image and Recipe via Potluck at Oh My Veggies

Baking Up Gluten-Free Cookie Recipes

Gluten-Free Cookie Recipes

The holidays can be a hard time if you have dietary restrictions, especially if you have Celiac disease. If you or your loved one needs to avoid gluten, bring one of this week’s gluten-free cookie recipes.

Whip up these adorable Vegan Gingerbread Cookies with your kids for Christmas Eve.

Vegan Gingerbread Cookies
Image and Recipe via VegAnnie

 

These Chocolate Peppermint Bark Cookies are perfect with a mug of hot cocoa.

Chocolate Peppermint Bark Cookies

Chocolate Peppermint Bark Cookies

 

Whip up these spicy and delicious Chai Spiced Cookies for a warm winter treat.

Chai Spiced Cookies
Image and Recipe via Texanerin

 

These light Lemon and Lavender Meringue Cookies are just right after a big dinner.

Lemon and Lavender Meringue Cookies

 

These Vegan Coconut Almond Macaroons are a light take on the classic.

Vegan Coconut Almond Macaroons

Image and Recipe via Holy Cow Vegan

 

Gluten-Free Almond Biscotti are perfect to dunk in your coffee Christmas morning.

Gluten-Free Almond Biscotti

 

Bake with your family today with these Vegan Gluten-Free Gingerbread Cookies.

Chewy Vegan Gluten Free Gingerbread Cookies

Healthy Root Vegetable Recipes

Healthy Root Vegetable Recipes

It’s Root Vegetables and Exotic Fruits Month, and we’re featuring healthy root vegetable recipes to help you make the most of them.

First up is an easy and light Heirloom Tomato and Beet Salad, perfect alongside family favorites like pasta and pizza.

Heirloom Tomato & Beet Salad

 

Whip up this Sweet Potato Parsnip Bisque and serve with sandwiches for a hearty lunch.

Sweet Potato Parsnip Bisque

 

This Vegan Christmas Salad is a beautiful addition to your holiday spreads.

Vegan Christmas salad

 

Make an easy one-bowl meal with Tumeric Rice Bowl with Garam Masala, Root Vegetables & Chickpeas.

Tumeric Rice Bowl with Garam Masala, Root Vegetables & Chickpeas
Image and Recipe via Eating Well

 

This beautiful Beet and Root Vegetable Tian with Apple Cider Reduction is a perfect holiday addition.

Beet and Root Vegetable Tian with Apple Cider Reduction
Image and Recipe via Food For My Family

 

Lighten up the winter classic with these Vegan Root Vegetable Pot Pies.

Vegan Root Vegetable Pot Pies

 

Dinner is made easy with these delicious Wild Rice & Roasted Root Vegetable Bowls.

Wild Rice & Roasted Root Vegetable Bowls