Turn Pumpkins into a Healthy Autumn Smoothie
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Autumn brings crisp days, falling leaves, and PUMPKINS!  These brightly colored vegetables are fun to carve into silly faces and place on our front porch. They are also packed with key nutrients and vitamins that boost your vision, strengthen your heart, and help us sleep better.  Buy an extra pumpkin (or two) this season and enjoy the health benefits that they provide by preparing a delicious smoothie.  It not only tastes great, but it’s also loaded with Vitamin C, fiber, potassium, and calcium. It’s pumpkin pie in a glass!

 

INGREDIENTS:

  • 1 banana
  • 3/4 pumpkin puree (if you purchased the canned puree, make sure it is unsweetened)
  • 1/2 cup instant oatmeal
  • 3 tbsp maple syrup
  • 1/2 tsp cinnamon
  • 1 pinch nutmeg
  • 1 1/2 tsp pumpkin pie spice
  • 1 cup milk
  • 1/2 cup vanilla greek yogurt
  • 1 cup ice

DIRECTIONS:

To puree fresh pumpkin: Preheat oven to 325 degrees F. Cut the pumpkin in half and remove seeds and pulp. The seeds are delicious when roasted so set them aside!  Cover each half with foil. Bake face down in the oven for 1 hour or until tender. Cool and place in blender to puree. Strain to remove any stringy pieces.

Place all ingredients into a blender and blend on high. Serve immediately & enjoy!

Rhianna Moore
Back to School Super Healthy Hero Lunches
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Your Super Healthy Hero needs to maintain their energy and focus throughout their busy school year. Studies have shown that kids that eat nutritious foods throughout their day have longer attention spans are able to focus more during the school day.  

Actively involving your child in preparing their school lunch is a great way to teach cooking and nutrition skills.  You can make it a fun activity that empowers your child to learn how to make a healthy lunch with the following tips:

*We love the evening lunch preparation as it eliminates the morning stress of getting everyone out the door and to school on time.
*A bento box is an excellent way to eliminate unnecessary waste, keep foods separate, and also to see if you have the proper proteins, veggies, fruits, and whole grains for a healthy lunch.
*Have your child practice their knife skills by chopping the vegetables and fruits.
*Leftovers from dinner are a great way to break up the lunch menu so keep a thermos handy to pre-warm up last night’s dinner and pop it in the lunch box.
*Skewers and toothpicks are excellent for making fruit kabobs. You can also use turkey, cheese, cucumbers, and tomatoes for fun and healthy skewers.

Rhianna Moore
Run, Jump, Play! Keeping Your Kids Active
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Studies have shown that many kids like to fill up their summertime with sedentary activities, such as video games or television.  Limiting screen time to less than 2 hours per day is recommended as well as 60 minutes of physical activity per day. This includes adults too!

It can be difficult to motivate the kids to get off the couch and out the door so we have a few fun ideas to get everyone moving.

  • Invite friends over.  This is a great way to get their creative juices flowing to see what physical activities they can create.  They might play a game of baseball in the backyard, create a dance together, or run through the sprinklers.
  • Keep it fun. Kids will not be super excited to go for a 15-minute jog around the block but if you challenge them to race you to landmarks along the way, you will most likely both end up having fun while getting your heart rates up.
  • Hula hoops, balls, & jump ropes. Keep toys handy to keep kids entertained and physically fit.
  • Enjoy nature. Playgrounds are great but spending time in nature climbing trees, building forts, and exploring offer a restorative way to stay active.
  • Stay active indoors. If the weather isn’t cooperating and outdoor time is limited, pull out the game of Twister and have a handstand contest to stay active.
  • Family Time.  Staying active as a family is a great way to model healthy routines.  After dinner, take the dog for a walk, go for a bike ride, or shoot baskets together as a family.
  • Try something new. Summer is a great time to try a new sport or activity. Sailing lessons, stand up paddleboarding or rollerblading are great exercises for all ages!
Rhianna Moore