The Dietary Guidelines for Americans encourages increased consumption of plants — whole grains, fruits, vegetables, legumes, nuts, and seeds — and reduced consumption of solid and added fats, added sugars, and refined grains. However, people are not eating nearly as much plant food as is recommended. Only 19% of Kansas adults eat enough fruits and vegetables. Don’t let a busy schedule keep you from choosing healthful foods. Instead, turn to a diet with more plants, one that is full of flavor and nutrients, low in calories, and very satisfying.
Benefits of Consuming More Plants
- Weight control: Weight gain is generally correlated with high daily calorie intake without nutrient-dense foods full of dietary fiber and complex carbohydrates. Fruits, vegetables, legumes, and whole-grain foods typically provide a feeling of fullness with fewer calories, compared to other types of foods. Putting more of these kinds of plants on the plate makes it easier to manage appetite and maintain body weight.
- High dietary fiber: Only plant foods contain fiber. Dietary fiber is a complex form of carbohydrate. Several decades of studies have confirmed the health benefits of eating a fiber-rich diet. Specifically, diets rich in foods containing fiber — such as fruits, vegetables, and whole grains — may reduce the risk of coronary heart disease and improve regularity. A healthy elimination system allows bodies to get rid of toxins. Beans and legumes contain more dietary fiber than almost any other food, so they are an integral and versatile part of a balanced diet. The dietary fiber in legumes is both soluble, which is especially useful in helping control cholesterol levels to lower heart disease risk, and insoluble, which improves regularity. Beans are also filling, so they help promote weight management by satisfying hunger.
- Chronic disease management: Consuming a diet featuring more plants is good for your health, today and tomorrow. Complex carbohydrates are easy to digest, and the antioxidants in plants help strengthen your body’s immune system. Many people with heart disease, diabetes, cancer, and various autoimmune diseases have been able to alleviate their symptoms by eating more whole grains, fruits, vegetables, legumes, nuts, and seeds, and consuming fewer solid and added fats, added sugars, and refined grains.
Adopting a more plant-based diet requires a change in thinking. It is not easy to change eating habit. But gradually, as more vegetables, fruits, and grains and legumes are added to your daily menu, you will discover how “real food” looks, smells, and tastes.
For more information about adding more plants to your plate, please view our K-State Research and Extension publication MF2977, which is the source of this information.
By: Ashley Svaty
In a move to create a more prominent “culture of health” in our region, community leaders representing Jewell, Lincoln, Mitchell, Osborne and Smith Counties participated in a series of meetings Kansas State University organized across the state of Kansas.
They had one goal in mind: to make Kansans healthier.
Read more about these conversations, and discover why it is important for our communities to make health and wellness a priority at http://postrockextension.blogspot.com/2018/04/post-rock-district-community-leaders.html
By: Nora Rhoades
The kids will be out of school before we know it, which means plenty of time outdoors! Before going outside, make sure you always lather up with sunscreen to protect your skin. To avoid burns, make sure you wear sunglasses and a wide brimmed hat and seek shade especially between 10am-4pm when UV rays are strongest. Lather up with a broad-spectrum sunscreen with an SPF of 30 or higher 30 minutes before outdoor activities and reapply at least every 2 hours. For more information please check out our May Building Strong Families insert found here: https://bit.ly/1ThhOSk
By: Ashley Svaty
In the latest issue of You Asked It! you will find articles on the following topics:
- What is CRISPR?
- All Produce Matters
- Testing for Mold in the Home
- Check Your Mouth!
- 2018 Kansas Health Symposium
- What is a Thawing Tray?
- Kids Cook Monday
- Screen-Free Week
To access this newsletter please click here
By: Ashley Svaty
Walk for health, fun, and prizes! Post Rock District is hosting 5 area poker walks to celebrate Walk Kansas. Bring a friend, have fun, and walk as much as you would like. The walkers with the best and worst poker hand at each event will win a prize. There will also be a special prize for 2018 Walk Kansas participants. For more information about these poker walks, please contact Ashley Svaty, firstname.lastname@example.org. Walk Kansas Participants be sure to wear your Walk Kansas t-shirts! We hope to see you there!
Poker Walk Locations:
April 20th, 11:30-1pm
Emerson Lake in Jewell
(1 block West on Pearl Street off Hwy 14)
April 23rd, 4:30-6pm
April 25th, 11:30-1pm
Smith Center Track
April 25th, 6:30-8pm
Mitchell County Courthouse
April 27th, 11:30-1pm
By: Ashley Svaty
Walk Kansas is an 8-week health initiative that encourages individuals and teams to reach health goals. Participants receive a weekly newsletter which includes articles about health, exercises, tips, and nutritious recipes.
This year Walk Kansas is specifically focusing on the importance of stretching and will include an optional pre/post fitness assessment for participants to measure their improvement over the 8-weeks.
Participants log minutes of moderate or vigorous activity daily and report online or to a team captain. Activities besides walking such as strengthening exercises, yoga, bike riding, team sports and others count toward Walk Kansas minutes. Teammates do not have to walk or exercise together, but are encouraged to connect and support each other, which is made easy through the online Walk Kansas system.
The 2018 Challenges:
- 8 Wonders Challenge: Each team member has a goal to log 2.5 hours of moderate to vigorous activity per week. Collectively the team would walk 435 miles over the 8-week program. This trail is featured in Marci Penner’s 8 Wonders of Kansas Guidebook.
- Cross Country Challenge: Each team member logs 4 hours of activity per week which would take the team on a 764 mile trail over the span of the program.
- Little Balkans to Nicodemus Challenge: 1,200 mile Kansas trail, with each team member logging 6 hours of moderate-to-vigorous activity each week.
For Post Rock District Walk Kansas participants, the program cost begins at $8. T-Shirts can be purchased at an additional cost. This year will have many giveaways including a few 8 Wonders of Kansas books, Walk Kansas ¾ sleeve t-shirts, hoodies, and more! Poker walks will also be happening across the district so be sure to join in on the fun! Join our Post Rock District Walk Kansas group on Facebook to learn more about Walk Kansas. Participants will have the opportunity to earn 4 Health Quest credits upon completion of the program.
Register today at any Post Rock District office or at www.walkkansasonline.org!
By: Ashley Svaty