March is National Nutrition Month! This past year has proven that nutrition and health are more important to all of us than ever. The Expanded Food and Nutrition Education Program (EFNEP) is UConn Extension’s outreach nutrition program in the College of Agriculture, Health and Natural Resources (CAHNR). Since EFNEP’s inception as a USDA demonstration program in 1968, community educators work with low-income, limited resource families with children to learn how to food shop, prepare and eat more healthily as well as increase physical activity.
National Nutrition Month is a natural connection for EFNEP’s year round healthy lifestyle education. Designated in 1973 by the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics, this promotion began as a weeklong campaign to promote the profession as well as to communicate nutrition messages to the public. As a result of growing consumer interest, there was a transition to month long event in 1980. Each year a theme is chosen to embody health through nutrition and physical activity.
This year’s theme is Personalize Your Plate because everyone is unique in regard to body type, goals, cultural background, taste preferences and experiences. During this unprecedented past year, EFNEP has pivoted along with the rest of the world to social media for connection and engagement with friends, family and acquaintances. Through the EFNEP Facebook page and Extension Instagram and website, messages have included recipes, video short talks and cooking demonstrations to highlight how to Personalize Your Plate. Join us on social media and our websites to learn more about nutrition and healthy lifestyle education.
National Nutrition Month Video Topics:
Article by Umekia R. Taylor, MS, RDN, CDN; UConn Educator/EFNEP Supervisor
Denny S. National nutrition month: a brief history. J Am Diet Assoc. 2006;106 (3):365-366.
Do you practice yoga? Do you have a favorite herbal tea? As part of #NNM, self-care is a big part of “being well” and making sure you’re taking care of the [mental] part of you. Helping yourself to wind down may lower stress levels- even if it’s that morning cup of tea that you absolutely need in order for your day to start off right. So, we ask-What do you do for #selfcare?
Here’s a new recipe to try to help you relax!
Did you know that buying frozen fruits and vegetables versus fresh have extra benefits? Frozen fruits and vegetables may be less expensive and can stretch your food dollars when fresh produce is not “in season” in your area. Frozen fruits and vegetables are frozen at the peak of their ripeness so their nutrients are available just as if they were fresh. Frozen produce is not limited to one season so you can buy all year round!
Wednesday was National Frozen Food Day, our recipe of the week features frozen fruit of your choice in our Build Your Own Overnight Oats recipe! All you have to do is pick one of the following ingredients, shake well or leave in layers, and stick them in the fridge before bed! Easy enough, right?
Here’s a tip: prepare the overnight oats in a Mason jar. No extra dishes required! Enjoy!
In March, four classrooms of 2nd grade students at Morris Street School in Danbury explored tasting new vegetables like green beans, sugar snap peas, carrots and cauliflower in celebration of National Nutrition Month. Registered Dietitian Nutritionist and UConn Extension Educator Heather Peracchio MS, RDN talked about the importance of eating a variety of different color fruits and vegetables for optimal health. Students also learned that it takes 10-20 exposures to learn to like a new food. For many students it was their first time trying some of the veggies. This years #NNM theme is “bite into a healthy lifestyle” to learn more go to eatright.org