In this article:
|Food Safe Families|
|It’s Crawfish Time in Louisiana|
|National Every Kid Healthy Week!|
by Cecilia Stevens
The LSU AgCenter is piloting an innovative program in four northeast parishes to increase access to fresh produce. “Grow a Row to Share” will be piloted April 1 to June 1, 2022, in Morehouse, East Carroll, Madison, and Tensas Parishes. After June 1, the program will be available for state-wide implementation. The program pairs home gardeners who have extra produce with local charitable food agencies. “Grow a Row to Share” provides an opportunity for the individual gardener to increase personal health through physical activity while growing produce to benefit the local food system.
Gardeners and charitable food agencies who wish to participate in the program register online at Eventbrite. This enrolls participants in the“ Grow a Row to Share” community where information from the LSU AgCenter on vegetable growing and food safety are shared. Registration will also help match gardeners with the nearest participating charitable food partners such as food pantries or Councils on Aging. Gardeners are encouraged to share any quality fresh produce from their gardens. There is no maximum or minimum amount of garden produce to share. Whether it is 5 squash shared one-time or 50 pounds of produce weekly or anything in between, the donations are needed by charitable food agencies. The process of gardening can also improve the health of the gardener. Gardening has been shown to improve the emotional and mental health of participants by providing stress-relief during physical activity. Bending, stretching, and lifting during the everyday jobs of gardening provide many health benefits. Some even refer to this as “gardening yoga” due to the many muscle groups used while working the soil. Participation in the “Grow a Row to Share” program offers many benefits to both the individual and community. For more information about enrolling, please contact Cecilia Stevens at email@example.com.
by Jocinda Jackson-Jones It's officially Spring and it’s the perfect time to get out in the community to enjoy the nice weather and connect with the people in your community (or neighboring communities). One great way to connect communities is through the development of community gardens. Community gardens are becoming more popular in communities as communities grow to understand the need for healthier foods. Community gardens are great for people who are interested in following the “ground to the table” concept as well as those who enjoy
donating fresh produce or work as Farmer’s Market vendors in their local Farmer’s Market. Food Pantries are also in need of fresh produce to distribute to community members during monthly distribution days. Donating fresh produce allows those who are elderly, disabled or unable to get out in the garden, to add fresh fruit to their diets without having to pay out of pocket costs to do so. Community gardens have the ability to connect communities in the following ways:
It's officially Spring and it’s the perfect time to get out in the community to enjoy the nice weather and connect with the people in your community (or neighboring communities). One great way to connect communities is through the development of community gardens. Community gardens are becoming more popular in communities as communities grow to understand the need for healthier foods. Community gardens are great for people who are interested in following the “ground to the table” concept as well as those who enjoy
Healthy Communities is open to working with those who are interested in making donations to food pantries and can assist community members by providing them with a list of local food pantries in their community or in a community nearby. Also, if there are established food pantries that are interested in starting a community garden, we can work with food pantries to assist them with their start-up needs. If you are in the Morehouse or East Carroll Parish area and want to learn about the ways we are working to promote community connections in your area through food systems projects and more, please contact Jocinda Jackson-Jones at jrjackson@ agcenter.lsu.edu. All other communities outside of Morehouse & East Carroll Parish can visit Healthy Communities (lsuagcenter.com) to get in contact with their Healthy Communities agent and discuss ways they can get out in the community.
by Brittney Newsome Easy Tips for Food Safety When Entertaining As excitement builds and you get back into the swing of entertaining families and friends, it is important to plan “bacteria-free” gatherings with these easy tips for food safety while celebrating. Be sure to plan ahead and be creative with a plethora of food choices for your guests while keeping food safety in mind!
Easy Tips for Food Safety When Entertaining
As excitement builds and you get back into the swing of entertaining families and friends, it is important to plan “bacteria-free” gatherings with these easy tips for food safety while celebrating. Be sure to plan ahead and be creative with a plethora of food choices for your guests while keeping food safety in mind!
by Markaye Russell
When you think about crawfish, most people envision Louisiana parties, family gatherings, and boiled crawfish. Crawfish boils are about gatherings and great taste! Enjoy Louisiana crawfish for a delicious taste and good nutrition. Crawfish are an excellent source of high-quality protein. Crawfish are low in calories, fat and saturated fat, and a good source of vitamins. Crawfish contain the following nutrients: Biotin, Calcium, Iron, Niacin, Phosphorus, Protein, Selenium, Vitamin A, Vitamin B-6, and Vitamin B-12. Although crawfish tend to be higher in cholesterol than most other shellfish, a 3 1/2-ounce serving provides only about half of the daily recommended allowance. Consuming a diet high in seafood has been shown to reduce the incidence of Alzheimer's, angina, stroke, asthma, heart disease and cancer. Crawfish have long been part of Louisiana's culture and an important and favorite food of Native Americans and early settlers. Centuries later, people enjoy crawfish in season with backyard boils and neighborhood get-togethers, as well as on the table all year long.
Crustless Crawfish Quiche
Directions: In skillet, melt margarine. Sauté garlic and onions briefly. Add crawfish. Remove from heat, cool slightly. Sprinkle mixture with seasoned salt. (If using boiled crawfish instead of packaged ones, you may not need the seasoned salt.) Mixture should be lukewarm. Stir in cheese. It may melt slightly but should not melt much at this point. Put mixture in the bottom of a pie plate that has been sprayed with vegetable oil cooking spray. Mix egg substitute, milk, mustard, and pepper. Pour over mixture in pie pan. Sprinkle with paprika. Bake at 400 degrees for 30 minutes or until set. Crabmeat or shrimp may be substituted for the crawfish.
*This quiche recipe is very versatile. You can substitute other seafood such as crabmeat or shrimp for the crawfish. You can even try other meats.
by Joy Sims
ActionForHealthyKids.org states that Every Kid Healthy™ Week is an annual observance created in 2013 to celebrate school health and wellness achievements. Recognized on the calendar of National Health Observances and observed the last full week of April each year, each day of the week shines a spotlight on the great actions schools and families are taking to improve the health and wellness of their kids and the link between nutrition, physical activity, mental health and learning – because healthy kids are better prepared to learn and thrive! So how do we participate here in Louisiana? You can register your school or scholars on the website to participate or you can engage in the designated days. There are plenty of resources ranging from toolkits to flash cards that can be of benefit for the Every Kid Healthy Week or throughout the course of the year! Here are some activities that you can do at home or in the classroom for each day from Action for Healthy Kids:
4/25 - Mindful Monday is focused on practicing and understanding social-emotional health and mindfulness skills. Encourage kids to write in their journal, build a “zen zone” in the home, or explore imagination through play-based yoga.
4/26 - Tasty Tuesday is aimed at building healthy habits and understating parts of the food system like cooking and gardening. Have a family food demonstration and taste test, practice understanding MyPlate guidelines, or talk about how food travels from the farm to the table.
4/27 - Wellness Wednesday wants us to get up and get moving by encouraging physical activity for a healthy mind. Take a family walk down the street, take a tech break and get into a new hobby like biking or skating. You can even have a family dance party to get your hearts pumping!
4/28 - Thoughtful Thursday encourages creating social cultures (at home or school) that celebrate diversity and equity. Talk about what it means to be diverse and inclusive with kids by getting creative! Spark conversations about bullying prevention and accepting others with school staff and youth.
4/29 - Family Friday inspires families and schools to support child health at school and home. Hosting a family fitness nigh or establishing a family self-care plan can help kids identify their feelings and process them in safe spaces. You also want to be a role model for healthy behaviors at home or in the school!