Here in Kentucky we wait 11 whole months for this special time of year. Production, nutritional value, and taste are at the peak of the season and prices are at the lowest level of the year. July is blueberry season!
There’s nothing quite like bringing home fresh berries in the summer, bursting with the perfect combination of tart and tangy sweetness. It’s easy to see why someone felt that blueberries needed their own month to celebrate.
As if the taste alone weren’t enough, there are plenty of reasons why blueberries are a great choice to include in your diet now and throughout the rest of the year. In addition to being dubbed a “super food” as a result of their high antioxidant content, blueberries are excellent sources of fiber and vitamins.
In the last five years, there has been a few interesting studies to further support the health benefits of blueberries:
There is exciting new evidence that blueberries can improve memory. After 12 weeks of daily blueberry consumption, older adults showed improvement on two different tests of cognitive function, including memory. Authors of this study suggested that the results indicate that blueberries could be beneficial not only for improvement of memory, but for slowing down or postponing the onset of other cognitive problems that occur with aging.
A recent study, that included blueberries as part of a daily “low-glycemic” (GI) fruit treatment, found that blueberries have a favorable impact on blood sugar regulation in persons already diagnosed with type 2 diabetes. Coupled with physical activity, over a 3-month period participants saw significant improvement in their regulation of HgA1C levels after consuming 3 servings of low-GI fruits (blueberries included each day).
Source: Janet Mullins, Extension Specialist for Food and Nutrition, University Of Kentucky, College of Agriculture
Very Berry Salsa
4 cups apples, finely diced
1 cup blueberries
1 cup strawberries, diced
1 cup raspberries, halved
1 cup blackberries, halved
1 tablespoon fruit preserves
½ teaspoon sugar
½ teaspoon brown sugar
In a large bowl, combine apples and berries. In a small bowl, mix together preserves and sugars until well blended.
Pour preserve mixture over fruit and toss to coat. Cover and chill in the refrigerator for at least 30 minutes.
Yield: 32, 2 ounce servings Nutritional Analysis: 20 calories, 0 g fat, 0 mg cholesterol, 0 mg sodium, 5 g carbohydrate, 1 g fiber, 4 g sugar, 0 g protein
Source: University of Kentucky Family and Consumer Sciences Extension, Plate it Up!
On July 11, 2013, the Lawrence County Health Department will begin a new series of the Cooper/Clayton Method to Stop Smoking, a 12-week comprehensive program. These workshops have been conducted all over Kentucky for many years, and have been very successful.The Cooper/Clayton Method to Stop Smoking is an effective cessation program which addresses all aspects of smoking. The Method uses nicotine replacement, provides 12 intensive education sessions and weekly support group meetings.This method is successful because there is a long-term support group; the training is designed to achieve and maintain abstinence; and it uses proven nicotine replacement products.The facilitators are trained in evaluating individual smoking patterns, understanding behavior modification techniques, how to lead group discussions and how to minimize chances for relapse.Anyone interested in becoming a non-smoker is encouraged to attend the Cooper//Clayton Method to Stop Smoking workshop. There is no pre-registration necessary and no charge for the class. The only cost to the participant is for nicotine patches. Classes will meet for one hour, once a week for 12 weeks.The classes will take place at the Lawrence County Health Department conference room, 1080 Meadowbrook Lane, Louisa. This session of classes will be held in the evenings, from 5:30 – 6:30 p.m. weekly, beginning Thursday, July 11, 2013. If you have any questions or need more information, please contact Pat Machir or Carolyn McGinn at 606-638-4389.
From the National Diabetes Information Clearinghouse Did you know that diabetes can lead to heart attack and stroke, blindness, or kidney failure?Too much glucose, a type of sugar, in your blood can cause diabetes problems over time. High blood glucose can cause heart and blood vessel disease, which can lead to heart attacks and strokes. Damage to the eyes can lead to loss of sight or blindness. Nerve damage and poor blood flow can cause foot problems, sometimes leading to amputation.You can prevent or delay diabetes problems by keeping your blood glucose, blood pressure, and cholesterol under control.
How can I tell if I have diabetes problems?
You may have diabetes problems if
your blood pressure is 130-140 over 80, or higher you have pain in your chest you have blurry or double vision, or feel pain or pressure in your eyes you have foot problems—such as blisters, ingrown toenails, cracked skin, or signs of infection your arms, hands, legs, or feet feel numb, or you feel shooting painsSome diabetes problems don’t have symptoms at first. For example, you cannot tell if your kidneys are damaged until they stop working altogether. Your doctor should test your urine every year to see how well your kidneys are working.
What can I do to stay healthy with diabetes?Controlling your blood glucose, blood pressure, and cholesterol can make a big difference in staying healthy. Talk with your doctor about what your ABC goals should be and how to reach them. A stands for the A1C test—a measure of what your blood glucose has been for the last three months. B is for blood pressure, and C is for cholesterol.
You can take these steps each day to reach your ABC goals:
Follow the healthy eating plan that you and your doctor or dietitian have discussed. Be physically active for 30 to 60 minutes most days. Take your medicines as directed and keep taking them, even after you’ve reached your goals. If you smoke, get help to quit. (1-800-QUIT NOW or 1-800-784-8669) Ask your doctor if you should take aspirin to prevent a heart attack or stroke. Check your feet every day for cuts, blisters, sores swelling, redness, or sore toenails.
Learn more about diabetes at www.diabetes.niddk.nih.gov . You can also call the National Diabetes Information Clearinghouse at 1–800–860–8747.
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