I’m back from maternity leave and getting resettled into some new responsibilities.  We had a staff member leave us, so Glenda and I are having to pick up the work load until we find someone new, or our responsibilites change.  Being a new mom is lots of work too, so I’ve gone part time (24 hours aweek) but am still trying to get everything done… that being said, we’ve decided to put our nutrition education volunteering on hold, until I have a managable workload.

We look forward to being able to start things back up in the summer or fall of 2011.  Thanks so much and since a few of you have been asking, here’s a photo of our boy.  He is 5 months old today!

Bundled out in the cold!

It’s been too long since I’ve updated our blog.  The summer is flying by and I’m just not able to do everything I’d like to!  Here’s a quick update:

Office Expansion

We are expanding our office!  We will not be occupying not only suite 107 in Bend, but also suite 108 next door.  We will hold all of our volunteer meetings in suite 108 to give us more room!  We also have a beautiful new space in Redmond for our staff and Pennie.  The main Deschutes County Extension office is still on the fairgrounds and always will be :).

Last meeting:

We emphasized the need we have for those of you doing demos to help out with I’m on maternity leave this fall.  We’d like to have pairs of volunteers adopt a site September – January.  You’d work together and work with your pantry to choose a recipe and day to go each month.  Then you’d shop for the food using our charge account and prep at our office or on site.  This would really help keep meeting the need of pantries during this time that I’m gone.  Thank you in advance for all you do!

Sydney Leanord came to talk to us about the community food assessment she’s been working on.  It was inspiring to see all of us work together to benefit those in need!  She also mentioned the Central Oregon Food Summit that is coming up next month.

SAVE THE DATE: September 10, 2010 Central Oregon Food Summit- at COCC in new student center.  9:00 am-4pm

For more information and to register for the Food Summit please visit http://cofoodsummit.yolasite.com/register.php

Click here for the complete detailed minutes from our meeting.

Help with School Nutrition Education Delivery

Please come join us for a brief meeting on August 18th from 2:00-2:30, followed by a session to stuff our Nutrition Action Kits from 2:30-4:00ish (Depending on how fast we are!)

Project Connect

September 18th our program will be joining thousands of volunteers around Central Oregon to serve the homeless in our community.  We will spend the day at the Deschutes County Fairgrounds serving more than 1500 men, women and children and giving them nutrition education.  We will be passing out samples of quick easy recipes that can be assembled with little or no cooking equipment.  This is a great opportunity to reach thousands of people at one event and we can use as much help as we can get.  Please think about saving this Saturday to be involved with Project Connect!

You can visit their website at http://www.projectconnectco.org/

We had a great meeting last week, but missing those of you who couldn’t make it.  Here’s a quick view of what we talked about.

Recipe of the month: Pasta with Greens and Beans, Pasta with Verduras y Frijoles

This recipe worked well as written, but could also take on many variations easily.  Some tips were to:

– Use less oil if you’ll be eating right away.

– Leave out salt.

– Try broccoli or other greens instead of spinach.

– Rinse the cooked pasta before adding to other ingredients to prevent it from sticking.

– Use more than 1 can of tomatoes to add more color and flavor.


Our feature food of the month is Tomatoes.  We handed out some great info about the history and facts of tomatoes.  Click on the link and you can see some great tomato facts to share from Iowa State University Extension http://www.extension.iastate.edu/healthnutrition/foodrecipeactivity/food/tomatoes.htm .  We also discussed the health benefits of tomatoes and the cancer fighting properties of lycopene, found in the skin of tomatoes.  Interestingly enough, our bodies absorb lycopene better from cooked tomatoes than fresh.  The high heat processing helps break down the tomato skin where lycopene is stored so our bodies can absorb it more easily.

Farmers Market Table

WIC has invited us to be present a their booth at the Deschutes County Farmers Markets.  We are going to try and have a volunteer each week at the Redmond Farmers Market at Centennial Park on Monday afternoons June 7th -August 30th and at the Bend Friday farmers market at St Charles Medical Center Fridays 2-6pm, June 4- Sept.  We’ll be giving out samples, recipes, and some handouts.  Please let me know if you’d like to sign up for a farmers market slot!

New Volunteer Training

June 15th from 9-3 I’ll be teaching a new volunteer training in Redmond at the OSU Extension office.  Please invite your friends who would like to participate in events with you!

Next meeting: July 7th 2:00-3:00 in our Bend office.

Written by RanDee Anshutz, University of Delaware Dietetic Intern

If you’ve picked up a magazine, newspaper, or turned on the TV lately you’ve probably heard about a super food—that magical food which we should eat for brain power, ultimate health, or other claims.  The arguments are so persuasive that we find ourselves left with two choices:

1.  Go out and purchase a life time supply of blueberries (or Acai, or Broccoli, etc.) or…

2.  Sit confused, pondering the truth about super foods, and wondering/worrying that we may be missing out if we don’t purchase that stockpile of the magic bullet.

Well worry and wonder no more!  If you’ve stocked up, fine—don’t throw away your supply (but you may want to move some of it to the freezer for later use), and if you’re the pondering type look no further for the answers.

The solution to the mystery of whether super foods exist is: No.  And Yes.

No, we haven’t reached the age (yet) where much like the Jetson’s we can push a button that says “dinner” and a pill will pop out that meets all of our needs.   We are complex creatures and the process of nourishing our bodies is the same—complex.  We require many nutrients, from Macro (think big) nutrients like carbohydrates, protein, and fat that come from different types of foods to Micro (think tiny) nutrients like vitamins and minerals that also come from a variety of foods.  In order to meet the complex needs of our body we must consume all of these foods and attain all of these nutrients.  You may be thinking: that’s a lot of food! But don’t worry; we are as efficient as we are complex, and are capable of storing nutrients for later use– but not eternally.  Some vitamins and minerals are nutrients that we don’t have to consume every day, because our bodies are storing them.  Instead a few times per week may suffice.  If we were to jump on the wagon of the super food, and consume all things Acai all day every day, while we may be high in some nutrients we will soon be deficient (low) in others not to mention bored of eating the same food daily.

The American Dietetic Association has responded to the super food movement by stating, “It is more important for the public to eat a “super diet” than to concentrate on individual foods as the key to good health. A super diet is one that follows the recommendations of the Dietary Guidelines for Americans on a daily basis. Rather than focusing on a single disease or food component, the Dietary Guidelines provide science-based advice to promote health and reduce overall risk for major chronic diseases through diet and physical activity (1).”

Here are some claims about a few current “super foods” and information on some foods of equal value:

Blueberries: Packed with antioxidants and phytoflavinoids, also high in potassium and vitamin C (2).  So are pureed or pasted tomato products, and orange juice to name a few (3).

Kiwi fruit: High in vitamin C, also a good source of potassium, fiber, and vitamin A and E (4).  Canned pumpkin is also a good source of vitamin A and E, fiber and potassium (3).

Acai Berry: full of antioxidants, amino acids and essential fatty acids (5).  Many types of fish and nuts are also high in amino acids and essential fatty acids (3).

Yes, some foods are higher in specific nutrients than others.  As mentioned above, macro and micronutrients come from a variety of foods; so while one food may be high in a specific nutrient it may be low or absent of another all together.

To stockpile or not to stockpile, that is the question.

It is not necessary to sign up for the super food of the month club and eat one food until your skin turns green (or blue, or red, or orange—which yes, orange can actually happen from severe carrot mania), but instead it is best to include those foods as part of a balanced diet.  We need carbohydrates which come from grains, starches, and naturally occurring sugars in foods like fruit and dairy for energy and brain fuel.  We need protein which comes from all foods except fruits (but higher levels exist in meats, beans, legumes, dairy products, and many grains) for cell strength and healing.  We need fat—believe it or not– for protection of ALL cells, and it comes in many forms but the unsaturated that comes from non-meat sources are optimal (oils and nuts, nuts, nuts) as are omega-3 fatty acids from fish.  And lastly we need a vast variety of minerals and vitamins—so taste the rainbow of fruits, vegetables, dairy products, whole grains, and lean protein sources!

  1. Hot Topics: Super Foods.  American Dietetic Association.  Available on-line at http://www.eatright.org/.  Accessed March 26, 2010.
  2. “Superfoods Everyone Needs.”  WebMD.  Available on-line at http://www.webmd.com/diet/features/superfoods-everyone-needs.  Accessed March 26, 2010.
  3. Foods listed by nutrients.  USDA National Nutrient Database.  Available on-line at http://www.ars.usda.gov/Services/docs.htm?docid=18877.  Accessed March 26, 2010.
  4. 10 Every Day Superfoods.  WebMD.  Available on-line at http://www.webmd.com/diet/guide/10-everyday-super-foods?page=2.  Accessed March 26, 2010.
  5. Dr. Perricone’s 10 Super Foods.  Available on-line at http://www.oprah.com/health/Dr-Perricones-10-Superfoods.  Accessed March 26, 2010.

What a great turn out for our Bend volunteer meeting last week!  I have lots of updates so listen (or read) closely.

Food for Less- We are ready to start demonstrating some healthy recipes on the first or second Saturday on the month.  We have two people signed up to go n April 3rd (Meryl and Wendy) and I will be working out the details with them.  If you would like to join them just let them , or me, know.

Family Nutrition Class at Juniper Elementary- April 13th from 6:00-7:30.  We have 4 interested volunteers who would like to teach this class to the parents of Juniper Elementary (Erica, Wendy, Misty, and Barb).  And one volunteer is interested in leading some kids activities with any children that come with their parents (Dee).   We will be setting up a day and time that works to do a training on the curriculum soon.

Members of our group recommended some good books.

Tender at the Bone by: Ruth Riekle

Epitaphs for a Peach by: David Masumoto

Wendy also wanted to let people know of a neat study book series that she took with some other people in Central Oregon.    She mentioned the book  Menu for the Future, with a discussion course sponsored by the Northwest Earth Institute, 317 SW Alder, Suite 1050, Portland, OR 97204.  The website is www.newi.org and phone is 503.227.2807  and email is contact@nwei.org. Some of you might be interested in going through this discussion class.

Our next meeing will be in Redmond on April 8th at 1:00.  Hope to see you there!

Michelle Obama has drawn attention to the health of our nation.  Yesterday she initiated a campaign called “Let’s Move” to take steps toward improving the health of our youth.  Click the link below to watch a short video about her campaign.


I had a wonderful time training 8 new volunteers this past week.  I’m excited to get to know them all better and for our veteran volunteers to get to know our newbies.  Thank you for taking the time to attend the training and your commitment to help educate your community about health and nutrition.

I will be training a few veteran volunteers in Redmond this Thursday on our adult curriculum.  We’ll be at Building 1 on the Redmond COCC campus from 1-3.  Please let me know if you are interested in joining us.  And again plan to have a training in the later part of March in Bend for this sort of thing.  Then we can reach out to the smaller surrounding communities if volunteers are interested.

Sign up for events: Please make sure to sign up for some event in February!  Just call me or email me if you’re interested.  (click the link to the right that says (Volunteer Event Calendar) to see dates and times.

February Recipe: Our recipe for the pantries this month features beans.  We’re going to be making the Refried Beans in the Bean Cookbook.  I’ll also try and have some of the “How to use Dry Beans” brochures to hand out.

Returning Pedometers: You can stop by the Bend office on Monday between 1 and 4 to drop off any that you’ve worked on at your home.  Thank you for your help!

Thank you so much for your service!

We had a wonderful meeting this month in Bend.  I’m excited about the future opportunites all of you are bringing to central oregon communities.  Here’s a short summary for those of you who could not make it.

Youth Programming

– Some background checks are cleared and we are waiting for a few more.  If you’d like to work with youth, please let me know so I can get you a background check to fill out.  Ashley has started to shawdow and help teach some of the classes in our schools.  We also have opportunity to have you go out in pairs to teach very simple lessons to the 3-5 year olds at Head Starts around the area.

Adult Programming

-Peggy and Carol are going to be trained on the ESBA curriculum that we have for adults, and then starting in February they will co-teach a class to a Redmond food pantry.  The training is tentatively Feb 4th from 1-3 in Redmond.  Please let me know if you’d like to join us at this training- you are all welcome to come!

-Misty, Lisa and Barb want to teach some adult classes in Bend.  We’ll find a time when we can do a training on the adult curriculum in Bend in February.  Then we can find some places for these three to teach, along with anyone else who is interested.

Grocery Store demonstrations

– I will be meeting with the Food for Less owner to see if we can plan a healthy recipe demo in their produce section to show people how to make a healthy recipe with fruits and vegetables.


-Many volunteers helped to assemble these for all of our school classrooms.  For each school that we teach in (28 around Central Oregon), we give our teachers a classroom set of pedometers with some instructions to use with their students.  We want to encourage these kids to do weight bearing activity and get foods rich in calcium to build strong bones.  Thank you very much to all of you for your help with this project- we could not have done it without you!  If you still have a pedometer pack at home, please let me know when you’re finished with them.  We are hoping to have them all back by the middle of February.

Improved Food Pantry Demonstrations

– We came up with the idea of creating some recipe sets of food that can be handed out when we give samples of our recipes.  I spoke with Steve Murray and he would be happy to supply us with some food from Neighbor Impact that our volunteers could use to put together “to-go” packs of dry ingredients used in the recipe.  Stay tuned for when we can get together and make some of these packs.

New volunteer training– please welcome our newbies!

This Thursday, I’ll be training 9 new volunteers, so you’ll have some new friends to meet and work with soon!  Don’t forget to look at our calendar and sign up for some events and we’ll see if we can get some new volunteers to go out with you.

As a member of the American Dietetic Association, I reap some great benefits.   Even the general public can access some great information from the ADA website: www.eatright.org.

I was reading some great tips that they share in one of their recent articles.   Here’s a snip-it from the ADA article.   To read the full article go to Helpful Tips for Healthy Holidays.

If you are hosting a gathering this holiday season you can reduce fat and calories without sacrificing taste by swapping out a few ingredients in your favorite recipes.

* Using two egg whites in place of one egg can reduce the cholesterol and produce the same tasty result.
* Use low-sodium, fat-free chicken broth in your mashed potatoes to add flavor and lighten holiday fat content.
* Substitute applesauce for oil, margarine or butter in muffins and quick breads like banana bread. Try substituting a small amount at first, as the more you substitute the more the texture of the finished product changes.
* For dips, sauces and pie toppings, use non-fat yogurt, sour cream and whipped topping.
* Sliced almonds make a delicious, crunchy topping in place of fried onion rings.
* Choose reduced-fat or non-fat cheeses for salads and casseroles.

Pack your shopping cart with plenty of fresh vegetables like sweet potatoes, winter squash, broccoli, carrots and green beans. Apples, cranberries and pears combine easily for a tasty salad, fruit crisp or topping for the turkey.

I received an email the other day with some hilarious hand washing videos.  I showed one at our nutrition education volunteer training last week and it made us all laugh out loud.  We watched “Cough Safe” on the “Hand washing video” link to the right.  Very funny and they definitely make a great point about public health!  Take a minute and a watch a few.

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