Thursday, September 3, 2015

1 in 6 kids suffer from this (?) Can you guess what that is?

If you answered Food borne illness you were right! According to the US Center for Disease Control and prevention 128,000 of the 15% of Americans that suffer from food borne illness end up in the hospital every year.

September is National Food safety month and a great time to review the basics and keep your home and lunch box safe. Here are 12 tips to keep the lunchbox and kitchen food borne illness free! 

Top 6 tips to keep the kitchen healthy:

  •  Keep it clean- wash your hands for at least 20 seconds before food preparation, after handling raw meat, poultry and eggs and before you move to the next step in cooking. (Sing the ABC Song or click here for more fun song ideas)
  • Always rinse fruits and vegetables before eating and peeling
  • Cook meats to the proper temperature: Click here for the internal temperature chart. 
  • Wash your surfaces with soapy water after prepping meals.
  • Avoid cross contamination, store raw foods below cooked foods, swap out grilling tools to avoid raw cross contamination.
  • Thaw overnight or thaw in cold running water (do not let sit in a bath of water).

 Top 6 tips to keep the lunchbox healthy: 

  • Pack 2 freezer packs if the lunch contains perishable foods such as meats, eggs or yogurt. Frozen water bottles or juice boxes, as well as freezing yogurt can be used to help keep the lunchbox within a safe temperature range. By lunchtime these items will be ready to eat or drink.
  • Clean the lunch boxes often by wiping them down or tossing them in the washing machine. 
  • Pack lunches in an insulated lunchbox instead of paper bags (its better for the environment and it keeps foods safer).
  • Throw away any leftover food and packaging after lunch is over. Do not reuse packaging unless it has been thoroughly washed. 
  • Pack the lunch the night before and keep in the refrigerator, this keeps the meal cooler longer and makes it easier during the morning rush. 
  • Wash your hands before you start meal preparation and make sure to tell kids to wash their hands before meal time. 

Cheers to a healthy school year that is food borne illness free! 

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Wednesday, August 26, 2015

Are you ready for some football? Healthy snacks for tailgating parties.

Tailgating is a community bonding experience that can be filled with outrageously delicious, but not always the most healthy, foods. Here are 5 healthy and easy food items that can be added to any tailgating festivity that squeeze in a little bit of healthy fats, vegetables and lean proteins. Guaranteed to  score a touch down with the taste buds and the body!

1. Guacamole- mash up a few ripe avocados, squeeze a half a lemon and add salt and pepper to taste. Dip your favorite chopped vegetables such as broccoli, carrots, red peppers, cauliflower. 

2. Skewered thinly cut chicken strips with cherry tomatoes and onion. Marinate the chicken overnight in balsamic vinegar, salt and pepper

3. Salad on a stick: Layer chopped romaine lettuce, quartered tomatoes, carrot slices or coins, red pepper slices and cucumbers. Dip in oil and vinegar. 

4. Grilled portabello mushrooms with goat cheese. 

5. Grilled stuffed peppers. Stuff with black beans, cheese and cooked rice or cooked quinoa and garbanzo beans. 

Have a great season!
Facebook: ABCD Eat Right

Monday, August 24, 2015

Healthy and Hydrated, keys to a great start to a school year. Why is hydration so important?

Staying hydrated is an important part to staying healthy during the school year. Although children may not be in the hot sun as much they will still work up a thirst in the classroom as their biggest muscle organ (their brains) start exerting themselves in scholastic exercise.  

How much does a child need to drink? 
A child needs 6-8 cups of fluid per day. 
One cup is equivalent to 240 milliliters which is equal to 8 ounces. 

What counts as fluid? 
-Water (the best hydrating liquid around)
-Milk (low fat and skim milk)
-100% juice (limited amounts due to the high amount of sugar and extra empty calories)
-Anything that is a liquid at room temperature (soup, Popsicle, smoothies, pudding etc.)

What are the signs of dehydration? 
Fatigue or tiredness
Lethargy or sleepiness/less active
Vomiting or nausea
Dry skin
Dry or sticky mouth
And often times hunger

Thumbs up to low fat milk, water and 100% juice.

Thumbs down to sports drinks, energy drinks, sodas and non-100% juice drinks.

Stay hydrated and have a great school year!
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Friday, August 14, 2015

Welcome your classmates and students back to school with these fun fruit masks!

The first week of school is a great time to remind students about the importance of a healthy lifestyle. 

Here are the 4 messages that the 
Back to School fruit mask discusses: 

1. Eat Breakfast everyday.
2. Stay hydrated by drinking at least 6 cups of water per day. 
3. Eat healthy by incorporating fruits and vegetables. 
4. Subtract sugary and processed foods and drinks. 

To download your free Back to School Mask click here

Have a great school year and don't forget to "like" our Facebook page: ABCD Eat Right or visit our Teachers Pay Teachers site

Thursday, August 13, 2015

Back to school with a full belly for breakfast! Top 5 easy and quick breakfast ideas.

Starting the new year can be a hectic time. Organizing the morning routine can be a tricky task and often breakfast gets left out of the picture. It's important to remember that breakfast is considered the most important meal of the day. Children, and adults, who eat breakfast not only perform better in school and sports but have reportedly have better behavior at work and in the classroom. 
Eating any old breakfast also won't do. So skip the sugary cereal aisle and focus on breakfast foods that are protein and fiber rich in order to provide the best nutritious punch for your  money.

Here are the top 5 best breakfasts to kick off 
the new school year! 

1. Yogurt parfait (layer nonfat Greek vanilla yogurt with granola and fruit (blueberries or bananas)
2. Whole grain waffle with peanut butter and banana

3. Scrambled egg with cheese sandwich on whole wheat toast and a banana to go

4. Smoothie (Add any variety of low fat milk or yogurt, nuts, seeds, peanut butter, frozen fruit, avocado, and bananas)

5. Trail mix to go (mix up Cheerios, nuts, seeds, raisins, dried cranberries and dried mangoes)

Go back to school, full and healthy! Have a great School year! 

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Monday, July 20, 2015

Summer Survival #Nutritionandkids

At the beginning of the summer I always have high hopes of teaching my kids more about cooking and getting them involved in what they eat. I have visions of them eating healthy snacks everyday as I cheerfully teach them a lesson about nutrition or science. But in reality I still have to work and my patience is limited as the day goes on and as the summer progresses, I switch to more of a survival mode as to who will win, junk food or fruits and vegetables.

Here are some quick ideas that have saved our busy summer from completely slumping off into a dietary disaster.

1. With the plenitude of great produce during the summer it has been an easy task to cut and keep fruit available. I even added some to a skewer and froze them for an easy grab and go treat. 


2. We tried to "play with our food" more by doing food related science experiments. We made fresh whipped cream by agitating cream in a jar and dehydrated mangoes and pineapples to see what would happen when all of the water was taken out of the fruits. Both of these experiments took minimal prep and were easy to do. 

3. We tried to stay active everyday. Even with the really hot and humid temperatures we made sure that we had enough water to drink. 

4. When we ate out we tried to eat healthy! When we were taking a break from the rain at the beach we stopped at one of our local favorite places and they had the coolest "Greek Yogurt banana split" for breakfast. Topped with fresh fruit and nuts this Greek Yogurt made a healthy breakfast option for the kids. This is also easily created for a healthy and quick breakfast at home. 

With only 4 more weeks left of summer, I think I feel like I can continue to make it more healthy than not, which will make it more enjoyable for the kids and the adults! 
Have a great rest of the summer! 

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Friday, July 3, 2015

Festive snacks for the 4th of July!

Have your kids taste buds go POP this Fourth of July with these easy, healthy and delicious treats!

1. Patriotic fruit kebab . Cut the bananas last and prepare right before you serve for a great way to squeeze in a serving of fruit. 

2. Banana ice cream (1 ingredient- frozen bananas! Just freeze, blend and serve)
3. Ring pop frozen fruit pops. I love this idea but did not have a chance to practice it before the blog was published. You can reuse the ring pops plastic portion and top with cut up fruit. Freeze until frozen and enjoy! 

4. Watermelon cupcakes. Made with cut out watermelon. Top with fresh fruit or whipped cream. 
5.Ice pops. I love these Zipzicles! They are the best especially on a hot day. I fill them with leftover smoothies or 100% fruit juice. 
Have a great Fourth of July!
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