5 Ways to Add Health and Fitness Into Your Busy Schedule

fitnessRachael Daily from Mapmyfitness shared that while optimum health and fitness are important to many, the demands of work, home and personal life can leave one feeling like there’s just not enough time. However, just a few minutes of exercise a day can actually improve one’s health. Whether it’s a simple five-minute walk or an intense hike in the woods, exercise can release endorphins that can help relieve stress and make you more relaxed and productive in everyday life.

Here are five tips to help you get fit and healthy.

1. Set short-term and long-term goals.
Short-term goals will keep you consistent daily. Long-term goals will challenge you out of your comfort zone. As a short term goal you could drink one green smoothie a day. A long-term goal would be to train and register for a 5K, 10K or beyond depending on your fitness level and time constraints.

2. Get support.
Reaching out to others who share similar goals will help you reach your goals faster. Join a Weight Watchers group or a local walk or running club in your area. Join a gym or do a yoga class. Find an online weight loss forum for support and motivation.

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Protein Is Your Friend

barsCollege of DuPage Nursing Student Meghan K. Breitenbucher shared that protein is a vital part of any healthy diet. The problem is that many people find carbohydrates and fats to be faster and tastier all around. Think about when you eat high carb meals though, it may taste great, but you develop what I like to call a “food baby.” This “food baby” leaves you wanting to take a nice siesta, mid-day. How does this tie into protein? Protein combined with some carbohydrates causes your blood sugar to rise and fall at more of a steadier rate.

Not making sense? Think of it like this… Carbohydrates make mountains in your bloodstream. The sugars are quickly taken in, spiking your blood sugar and then the insulin lowers you quickly. Suddenly you feel tired, from the fast incline and decline. You also feel hungry sooner. Protein however, gives you nice hills. It causes your body to process those sugars over a more steady time-frame. This nice hill keeps your cravings down, and your energy up.

When possible, always add some protein into your meals and snacks. Whether it’s a cheese stick, some eggs, almonds, etc. Your body will thank you later. Below I’ve attached a family-friendly recipe for some simply delicious protein bites. I found it off of a recipe blog website. This is a quick way to give your family a high protein and carbohydrate combination snack to curb the hunger until dinner time rolls around. Enjoy!!!

Honey-Nut Protein Bites

Author: Lauren Greutman
Prep time:  10 mins
Total time:  10 mins
Serves: 15 bites


  • 3cups of Honey-Nut Cheerios (comes out to 2 cups of crushed Honey-Nut Cheerios)
  • 1 cup Unsweetened Coconut
  • 2 Tbsp Yoplait Greek Yogurt
  • ⅔ cup of Natural Peanut Butter
  • ⅓ cup Honey
  • 1 cup Mini Chocolate Chips


  1. Measure out 3 cups of Honey Nut Cheerios. Place in ziploc bag and break them into crumbs with a rolling pin or spoon. This will bring them down to apron 2 cups worth.
  2. Add 1 cup of unsweetened coconut.
  3. Add in 2 Tbsp of Yoplait Greek Yogurt
  4. Add ⅔ of a cup Natural Peanut Butter (I used Crunchy this time for extra protein)
  5. Add ¼ cup of honey
  6. Add in 1 cup of Mini Chocolate Chips
  7. Stir together and roll into small balls
  8. Refrigerate for at least 1 hour
  9. Serve to hungry children when they get home from school


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Aspirin: An Old Drug with a New Indication


Elizabeth Moxley an Adjunct Faculty Member at the College of DuPage and an Assistant Professor at DePaul University shared that aspirin (ASA) is a widely used drug and popular in the news lately. A recent study published in JACC (J Am Coll Cardiol. 2015 Jan 20;65(2):111-21) reports that more than 11% of individuals who take ASA daily to reduce the risk of heart disease, should not; it carries the risk of GI bleeding. The American Heart Association (AHA) guidelines suggest daily ASA for individuals who have a 10-year cardiovascular risk of at least 10%. (See NIH risk calculator for risk assessment). The study also estimated that 17% of women taking ASA had less than a 6% risk, and therefore, ‘may be doing more harm than good’, according to the author of the study, Dr. Virani. In a similar vein,

Dr. S. Nissen, from the Cleveland Clinic recommends not taking ASA to prevent a first heart attack or stroke and believes millions of individuals may take ASA who should not. These warnings have been considered in part, as ASA therapy has for the first time been recommended to prevent not only heart attacks, but colorectal cancer (CA) according to an expert panel.

The guidelines of the draft report (Sept. 14, 2015) from the US Preventive Services Task Force, found that the benefits of low-dose ASA outweighed the risks in adults ages 50-69 who are at high risk for heart disease, with the most benefit for those in their 50s and lower for adults between 60-69 years, as the risk for bleeding increases with age. No current recommendations are listed for individuals less than 50 or older than 70 years.

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Get Ready for “APPLE CRUNCH DAY!”

crunch logoIt is not until October 22 but we would love to post YOUR Healthy “Apple Crunch” Selfie on our site to encourage EVERYONE to participate!  Please email us your selfie at: jay@healthylombard.com

On that date the first Great Apple Crunch! Illinois  is joining with other Midwestern states to celebrate local apples this fall as a part of Farm to School Month.

The Great Apple Crunch 2015 is a pilot program coordinated by the Illinois Farm to School Network, Agriculture in the Classroom and the Illinois Farm Bureau.

Schools (AND ADULTS) are encouraged to participate in the Crunch and there are many options for what they can do. The cafeteria can serve local apples during the lunch period, using their regular food service providers. Depending on where you are located, local can mean within a 200-mile radius. Cafeterias are also encouraged to use DOD Fresh funds to buy Illinois apples for the Crunch. This will benefit our local farmers and you’ll love the way the fresh, locally grown apples taste. Kids can crunch into their apples all at the same time and see how loud it gets!

The Lombard Jewel Store has already opted in to help promote this event. They are planning on: handing out Healthy Eater Cards to the kids under 12 from the Lombard Elementary School District 44 and will also have the store in Lombard to hand out healthy eater cards and coupons for bagged apples that day. 

If YOUR school would like some cards/coupons, just comment on this post and a Healthy Lombard representative will get you signed in.

To have YOUR school officially participate and receive great information and receive a cafeteria poster and a classroom ‘Ag Mag’ all about apples, created by Agriculture in the Classroom just contact Lydia Mills at the Illinois Farm to School Network at lydia@sevengenerationsahead.org.


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GYM Bags Are Doing Great At Butterfield School

GYM Bags

Healthy Lombard  would like to sincerely thank Physical Education Instructor Carrie Fernandez at Butterfield School in District 44 for participating in our G.Y.M. (Get Yourself Moving) Bag Program for 2nd graders

This program provides the opportunity for two or more 2nd graders to take home a G.Y.M. Bag each Friday so they can continue to “exercise” 60 minutes a day during the weekend. The bag contains balls, a Frisbee, a jump rope, a paddleball, recipes, a list of healthful hints, an activity booklet from Elmhurst Hospital or The BEARS, and a journal.

The students use all the items in the bag, fill out the activity booklet. They also write up what they did on the journal sheet that is then displayed either on a hallway or gym bulletin board the following week (AS SHOWN ABOVE).

This is a great activity because it involves children and parents, the left and right side of the brain, and … it’s FUN!

IF YOUR LOMBARD-AREA SCHOOL is not taking advantage of this FREE program, please ask  the principal or the Physical Education Teacher to send an email to us at jay@healthylombard.com.


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Ease a Throbbing Headache With Yoga

Core_PremiumJenny Sugar from POPSUGAR suggests if you’re not a fan of heading to the medicine cabinet when you feel a headache coming on, then head straight to your yoga mat. Headaches can be caused by a variety of reasons such as tension in your neck, tight shoulders, or back pain, and these yoga poses are designed to gently stretch and open those areas, while circulating blood to your head. You can do one pose, a few, or follow the entire sequence.

Seated Neck Release – Sometimes headaches can be caused by neck pain, so stretch out this tight area with a Seated Neck Release. Sitting in a comfortable position, place your left hand on the right side of your head and gently tilt your head to the left. Hold for a few breaths and then slowly switch sides. Repeat on both sides a few times.
Relaxed Quarter Dog – Here is a more relaxed version of Downward Facing Dog called Quarter Dog. It takes the pressure off your hands and wrists by having you rest on your forearms. Take deep breaths while in this pose, and just let your head hang between your shoulders. Circulating blood to your head can often be just the thing to relieve your headache.
For more poses, click here.
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Turmeric – The spice for Healthy Living

powderCollege of DuPage Nursing Student Irene Iwerebon commented that most of us buy our spices from the grocery store or Farmer’s market and usually ones that we are familiar with. Have you ever wondered the spice “Turmeric” is used for? Turmeric (Curcuma longa) spice is one of the world’s healthiest spices. It is is a bright yellow spice known for certain medicinal qualities. One major benefit is its effect on the brain. Because Curcumin crosses the Blood-Brain Barrier, it is thought to prevent Alzheimer’s disease.Turmeric is used as a culinary spice and herb in India and interestingly enough, India is known to have the lowest incidence of cognitive decline worldwide

Other benefits from the use of Turmeric include anti-inflammatory qualities that are effective in treating flatulence, jaundice, menstrual difficulties, bloody urine, hemorrhage, toothache, bruises, chest pain, and colic. It has both antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties which explains why people with joint disease such as rheumatoid arthritis find relief when they use this spice.

Turmeric needs to be used with caution since it can cause stains due to its deep color. If staining does occur, wash with soap and water and consider wearing disposable gloves while handling turmeric. When using fresh turmeric, allow it to first to dry and then grind it into a fine consistency, however, the organic powder can be found in local grocery stores such as Jewel and Whole Foods.

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So You Want to Stop… Craving Junk Food

ice creamCoach Stevo from Hello Healthy shared that he loves ice cream. He  loves ice cream the way most people love their next breath of air. And he would eat ice cream morning, noon, and night if it weren’t for those pesky tens of thousands of accumulated calories. Even though he know it’s not the best food choice, He often get cravings for it that will last for days. Which is why he was probably thinking about ice cream when he read this story:

Two monks were walking down a muddy road after a heavy rainstorm. As they walked, they came upon a beautiful woman who was unable to cross the deep puddles to the other side of the road. The elder monk lifted her up and bore the beautiful woman across the road before continuing on his way to the monastery. Later that evening, the younger monk asked the elder monk, “Sir, isn’t it true that we monks may not touch a woman?” The elder monk responded, “Yes, that is true.” “Sir, then why did you carry that woman across the road?” The elder monk smiled, “I left her on the side of the road, but you are still carrying her.”

Luckily, ice cream is not a moral issue and Stevo is not a monk. But as this ancient story illustrates, cravings are a part of life. They do not indicate that you’re weak or doing something wrong, instead cravings are simply proof that you’re human. And luckily, there is a very simple strategy to deal with what his mom calls, “wanting what you don’t want”—Give into it (a little). This works for three reasons:

1. Willpower is a limited resource According to the research of psychologist Roy Baumeister,we don’t have an endless supply of willpower. In the story, instead of obsessing over the woman, the younger monk could have spent all day in prayer and doing good for others. Similarly, the brain power you spend denying yourself ice cream is brain power you could be using to make lots of better food and lifestyle choices. In fact, experiments have shown willpower is linked to available glucose. So you might simply be low on willpower because your blood sugar is low, and giving into the craving (a little) will make it easier to resist and make better food choices in the long run.

2. Not doing something is harder than doing it Another major neurological factor in the success of giving in (a little) is that humans are really bad at not doing things. For example, don’t think of a pink elephant. Now don’t eat ice cream. See? If you tell yourself you can’t ever have something, you’re far more likely to want it—in psychology this is called “reactance.” Telling yourself you can have something, even just a little bit, actually makes us feel less controlled by the craving, and we’re more likely to be able to avoid it in the future.

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Healthy Recipe for Dinner

sammCollege of DuPage Nursing Student Patricia Vasquez suggests this great, healthy recipe for Baked Salmon

Nutrition Info
Serving Size: 1 (208 g)
Servings Per Recipe: 2

AMOUNT PER SERVING% DAILY VALUECalories 238.6 Calories from Fat 67 28%Total Fat 7.5 g 11%Saturated Fat 1.4 g 6%Cholesterol 77.4 mg 25%Sodium 2137.4 mg 89%Total Carbohydrate 2.9 g 0%Dietary Fiber 0.6 g 2%Sugars 0.7 g 2%Protein 38.4 g

12 ounces salmon fillets (about 2 fillets)
1⁄4 cup soy sauce
1 teaspoon lemon juice
1⁄2 teaspoon ginger
1⁄4 teaspoon cinnamon
1⁄8 teaspoon pepper

Preheat oven to 325 degrees.
Mix together soy sauce, lemon juice, and spices.
Place salmon in a shallow baking dish, and pour liquid mixture over the filets.

Optional: grated lemon skin on salmon fillets. May place sliced lemon on salmon fillets.

Bake about 25 minutes or until salmon is flaky.



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