Mother’s Day Drink Recipes - Family, Friends & Food with Jayne

Mother’s Day is a few weeks away and I don’t know about you but my favorite way of celebrating Mother’s Day is at the lake especially if it is a beautiful Minnesota spring day! By the time Mother’s Day is here I have the spring-cleaning done at the cabin, the patio furniture is out at the lake and the outside fireplace is working. The dock is in along with the boat and I’m ready anytime for summer weather. Continue reading “Mother’s Day Drink Recipes”

Peek into Kelly's Freezer – Frozen Food Month

Coborn's Blog: Peek into Kelly's... FreezerPassionate about food and good nutrition, Kelly, a BLEND Program Specialist for CentraCare Health Foundation, is also a mom who wants to set her kids up for a lifetime of good health. NuVal is a system designed to lead customers to the most nutritious food choices. It is not a diet or weight-loss plan. The opinions expressed in this blog are the opinions of the writer and not the opinions of NuVal LLC, Coborn’s, Inc., BLEND, and the CentraCare Health Foundation.

Coborn's Blog: A Peek into Kelly's Freezer - Frozen Food Month

In our old house, we had a large chest freezer in the basement.  It was big enough to store whole turkeys, half cows, pre-made meals, gallons of ice cream and half-baked pies.  It held whatever frozen foods we stocked up on during Coborn’s penny-pincher sales.  When we moved, the freezer stayed. So now we just have the freezer drawer in our kitchen refrigerator.  No more freezing to excess!  To take advantage of this limited frozen space, I’ve had to prioritize what I buy to freeze.

Here are some items tucked in my freezer these days…

You will still find meaty options, just in smaller quantities.  We have a beef roast, some packages of hamburger and bacon-wrapped turkey tenderloins.  And, shrimp.  Always a bag of shrimp.  Shrimp are quick to thaw, easy to add to a stir fry or pasta.  And, they score a NuVal 75.  Morning Star Farms Spicy Black Bean Burgers (NuVal 42) are a nice meatless option for our vegetarian daughter.

Click Here>>> to read the rest of Kelly’s blog on the B.L.E.N.D. website.

Click Here to learn more about B.L.E.N.D. and what they are all about.

Working Together for Good Health

Kelly Radi

Hi everyone! I’m Kelly Radi – BLEND Program Specialist and NuVal® Educator for Coborn’s Grocery Stores.  A couple of weeks ago I wrote a BLEND “guest” blog called: “NuVal Spokemom – Kelly Radi”. I explained my day-to-day frustration with reading food labels and selecting the healthiest food for my family. I’ve been reminded I forgot to share something in that first post! ”How did I get this gig?”

It’s a one-of-a-kind tale – you’re sure to enjoy.

A Joke?

So, what happens when a grocer, a doctor and an insurance provider sit down at the same table?

Sound like the beginning of a funny joke? Well, it’s actually a true story and the beginning of a very positive and unique partnership. Please, allow me to explain.

The grocer is Coborn’s, Inc. The doctor is CentraCare Health Foundation’s BLEND initiative. And, the insurance provider is Blue Cross-Blue Shield of MN. You might be asking yourself what these three entities could possibly have in common and why would they sit down at a table together. These three have one BIG common denominator…Y-O-U. Specifically, your health.

All three have joined forces in a commitment to positively impact the health of those folks living in Central Minnesota. Those folks (yes, you and I) are their customers, patients and clients. They want us to be healthy! Not only do they say they want us to be healthy, they are putting their resources toward exactly that.

An Ounce of Prevention

According to the CDC, more than sixty percent of adults in Minnesota are overweight or obese. Treating obesity-related conditions takes a tremendous toll on our pocketbooks. In 2008, U.S. medical costs associated with obesity and obesity-related conditions were estimated at $147 billion. Recognizing the burden placed on Minnesotans and caring enough about the health of their customers, Coborn’s, Inc., BCBS of MN, and CentraCare Health Foundation have committed to putting their dollars toward disease prevention and overall community health.

NuVal® Makes it SimpleNuVal

Our grocer, insurance provider and healthcare system chose to bring the NuVal® Nutritional Scoring System to the area to give people a tool to simplify healthy grocery shopping. How? The NuVal® System scores food on a scale of 1-100. The higher the NuVal® Score, the better the nutrition. NuVal® scores summarize comprehensive nutritional information in one simple number between 1 and 100. Each NuVal® score takes into account more than just the nutrition fact panel. It considers 30-plus nutrients and nutrition factors – the good (protein, calcium, vitamins) and the not-so-good (sugar, sodium, cholesterol). And then it boils it down into a simple, easy-to-use number to help you choose the grocery items you want for better overall nutrition.

A Unique and Positive Partnership

While NuVal® is available coast to coast, it’s no joke Central MN is the only place in the nation where a grocer, health system and insurance provider joined forces to create a community-based model using NuVal® as a tool for better health. This unique collaboration is a win-win for area residents who want easy access to healthy grocery options.

“As a health company committed to making a healthy difference in people’s lives, Blue Cross works to find innovative ways to reduce obesity in Minnesota and the toll it takes on our health. We believe this collaboration with CentraCare’s BLEND organization, and Coborn’s stores, is an important step in removing barriers and improving access to healthy eating. Now families will have the information they need to make the healthy choice the easy choice.”  ~ Marc Manley, M.D., Chief Prevention Officer for Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Minnesota.

From Mom to “Spokesmom”

I’ve been very thankful to ride along in this journey with the CentraCare Health Foundation’s BLEND initiative, BCBS of MN, and Coborn’s, Inc. since the launch of NuVal® in eight Coborn’s grocery stores back in 2010.  It has helped me make wiser, and healthier, food decisions. I’ve become an expert of sorts over the last year-and-a-half and have often found myself teaching others the benefits of using NuVal®. Coborn’s has now since expanded NuVal® to all of their 30 store locations. And will continue to integrate NuVal® into all of their new stores as they expand.

Just recently, I accepted a position to work for the CentraCare Health Foundation’s BLEND initiative as their NuVal® Spokesmom and Program Specialist. My job is to help Coborn’s launch NuVal® in the remaining stores throughout the CentraCare Health System’s 12-county service area. Through a grant provided by BCBS of MN, I have my dream job — to meet new people and talk about food and nutrition. Yes, I get paid to talk about food! I told you it was my dream job. I make trips to Coborn’s grocery stores to educate store employees and shoppers, present to civic groups, schools, and organizations, and write bi-weekly blogs for BLEND and the Coborn’sBlog site.

Albertville, MN Royalty
Look at me! I’m with Abertville Royalty at the Coborn‘s store in Albertville, MN!

This partnership has given me the opportunity to make healthier food choices. And now, it can help YOU and the people in Central Minnesota strive for better health.

Please join me as I write about my real-life experiences with NuVal®. I’m calling my new BLEND blog: “Peek into Kelly’s…”. I’ll give you the chance to “peek into” my pantry…or kitchen…maybe even my lunch bag. I’ll keep it simple, informative and real. Thank you for joining me on this journey.

Happy Eating!

Read more of Kelly’s blog post at BLEND!

Passionate about food and good nutrition, Kelly, a BLEND specialist for CentraCare Health Foundation, is also a mom who wants to set her kids up for a lifetime of good health.  NuVal is a system designed to lead customers to the most nutritious food choices. It is not a diet or weight-loss plan.  The opinions expressed in this blog are the opinions of the writer and not the opinions of NuVal LLC, Coborn’s, Inc., BLEND, and the CentraCare Health Foundation.