The 100-year signing anniversary of the Smith-Lever Act which officially created the national Cooperative Extension System, will take place in 2014. Extension offices across country are planning celebrations this year to highlight our past and focus on the current application of Cooperative Extension’s mission and vision as we move into our next century. This has me thinking about my family celebrations throughout 2014. How can we celebrate our family milestones with our health in mind?
Choose MyPlate suggests 10 tips to Make Celebrations Fun, Active and Healthy. Here are a few of the tips we will use to plan a 25th birthday party this January:
Offer thirst quenches that please. Since its winter, our warm drink menu will include flavored teas and hot chocolate made with low-fat milk. We will add some orange slices to the glasses of water for color and to make it look festive.
Try healthier recipes. We have collected lighter version recipes of traditional winter “comfort” foods. I like to use cook-books or websites like the American Heart Association or the DASH diet to find recipes that are both tasty and good for us.
Two last points from the ten tips: Use MyPlate to Include Foods from the Five Food Groups and Make Foods Look Festive. After planning the lunch menu which will include whole grains, fruit, vegetables, low-fat milk and lean protein we will add some colorful garnishes. We’ll top the salad with sliced almonds and green onions and add some orange slices to decorate the plates. In addition to making the foods look festive, we’ll use silver decorations on the table to celebrate this 25 year birthday!
We will have a birthday cake and focus on the recommended serving sizes. Regular or mini cupcakes are a nice choice for celebrations as a way to not overload the dessert plate. Not only are we celebrating a birthday but we are also celebrating a long, happy, healthy life!
Photo Source: The Web site of the National Cancer Institute (http://www.cancer.gov)
Writer: Patrice Powers-Barker, Family and Consumer Sciences Educator, Ohio State University Extension, Lucas County, Maumee Valley EERA, firstname.lastname@example.org
Reviewer: Lisa Barlage, Extension Educator, Family and Consumer Sciences, Ohio State University Extension, Ross County/Ohio Valley EERA, email@example.com