Category: December 2018

Have a Healthy Holiday Season!

The holiday season is here and parties and gatherings are being planned to celebrate the season. Whether it is a small gathering or a large office potluck, remember to bring healthy treats to curb high-calorie snacking.

Holidays offer many food temptations. Spread out the sweet treats so they are not lurking around every corner. Guests will appreciate lighter, non-sweet options more than you think. Parties can be stressful for some because they feel overwhelmed and forget that the season should be fun. This leads to mindless snacking and extra calories.

Offer healthy choices such as using whole wheat bread for sandwiches and seltzer water with fruit instead of soda. Encourage people to take a walk to work off holiday stress and anxiety.

Do you have several parties to attend? Plan ahead to help reduce those extra calories. Eat a small meal for breakfast with whole grains, fruit and protein. Don’t starve yourself thinking you’ll save room for party food. Take small bites and savor the delicious party foods. Go through the buffet once to reduce nibbling.

Above all, take time to relax and enjoy the holiday season!

Source: www.cdc.gov/features/healthy-holidays-work/index.html and www.eatright.org/health/lifestyle/seasonal/helpful-tips-for-healthy-holiday-parties

By:  Ashley Svaty

A New Year – Focus on an Action Plan for Healthy Living

As 2018 comes to a close and you look toward 2019, we encourage you to focus on improving your health and wellness. K-State Research and Extension has a great resource, Action Plan for Health Living, which can help you set goals throughout the New Year that can truly enhance your quality of life. Remember to reach out to the Post Rock District Agent Team as you work toward your goals. We are happy to assist and support you!

By:  Nora Rhoades

Give an Active Gift

If you have a technology related item near the top of your holiday or birthday wish list, you’re not alone.  Many adults and children ask for some form of technology which might be a tablet, TV, smart phone, video game, etc.  Although these forms of technology might sound great and are okay to use every once in a while, too much sedentary behavior and screen time negatively impacts health in numerous ways.  Before making a purchase that will encourage more screen time and sitting, consider giving a gift that will keep kids and families active throughout the year!

Ideas for Active Gifts:

  • Balls, Frisbees, hula hoops
  • Sleds
  • Scooters, bikes and riding toys (along with helmet, knee/elbow pads)
  • Roller blades or roller skates (along with helmet, knee/elbow pads)
  • Sports equipment
  • Active music
  • Kites or sand box toys
  • Active board games
  • Family membership to a fitness center, children’s museum, or zoo.
  • Fishing poles
  • Gardening equipment
  • Pair of sneakers

Source: University of Nebraska Extension

By:  Ashley Svaty

What to do with your Christmas Tree after the Holidays

After the holidays, many municipalities allow old Christmas trees to be placed curbside. Trees are then collected and ground up for mulch or burned. If you miss the designated date, or your trash collector doesn’t accept trees, there are several options to prolong the useful life of the tree.

An old Christmas tree can be used to benefit birds, and the landscape by placing it in a corner of your deck, and spreading some birdseed nearby, or tying it to a deciduous tree or post near a bird feeder. The birds benefit from having escape cover nearby when hawks or cats threaten, and the dense boughs reduce the wind chill on a cold night.

You can also use the tree around the landscape by clipping off all of the branches. Use the boughs to add extra insulation around semi-hardy perennials or to trees and shrubs that were recently planted. The leftover trunk may be used as a garden stake next spring. Or cut and let it dry for a few weeks, and you will have some easy lighting firewood. Just beware that most conifer species tend to spark and pop more than hardwoods, as resin pockets in the wood make tiny explosions. This can delight the youngsters, but for safety’s sake, keep an eye on the fire when burning Christmas tree logs!

By: Cassie Homan