Health Eating, Vibrant Living!

Veg4Health Newsletter

Quick and Easy
Health Enhancers
If your life is really busy, and who's isn't, then perhaps these quick and easy ideas will help rev up your health. You'd be surprised to see how quickly little things add up.
  1. If fast food is the only options you have, order it with extra "veggies".  Whether it is a sub, a taco or a burger, ask them to hold the cheese and add extra lettuce and tomato. 
  2. Want a pizza?  Ask for very light cheese, skip the meat and add another veggie.
  3. No time to get your morning or evening walk in?  Get a $5 pedometer and keep track of your steps.  Everyday try to add 100 or more steps into your routine than the previous day.
  4. No time to pack a full lunch?  Think outside the box.  Take a big bowl with rinsed and drained kidney beans, order a small chili at the drive through and mix it with your beans.  It will stretch your budget and help with the calories too. 
  5. Learn to fidget!  People who regularly "fidget" throughout the day are generally leaner and burn more calories than non-fidgeters.
  6. "Dying" for ice cream?  Order a sorbet instead! 
  7. Institute a family activity after dinner during these longer summer days.  Take up bike riding and keep track of your miles.   See if you can "climb" Pike's Peak or "bike" across your state before the days get too short.

Potato Kale Soup Recipe
I was busy playing with the kids last week and didn't get home in time to spend much time preparing dinner.  I threw this recipe together, put it all in my pressure cooker and had a hearty and very tasty soup in under 30 minutes.  The kids loved it too!


  • 1 medium onion
  • 2 stalks celery - chopped
  • 4 medium potatoes - chopped
  • 1 bunch Kale - de-stemmed and chopped
  • 4 cups McKay's chicken broth
  • approx 1 cup soy milk
  1. Saute' onion and celery
  2. Put all ingredients in pressure cooker, except soy milk
  3. Bring to high pressure, then cook approximately 2-3 min.
  4. Use cold water or natural release method
  5. Use stir-stick (immersion blender) to puree
  6. Add soy milk to desired thickness, heat and serve.


Key nutrition facts for cantaloupes 
  1. Only 100 calories for ½ melon.
  2. High in vitamin A, C and potassium.
  3. Contain myoinositol - a lipid that helps with anxiety, insomnia and hardening of the arteries.
  4. Contain the greatest amount of digestive enzymes than any other melon.
  5. Recommended by the American Cancer Society as powerful agents in the fight against intestinal cancer and melanoma.
  6. Contain 95% water by weight and only 5% sugar by weight.

Welcome to my kitchen!  It's the start of early summer and time to really enjoy life and all it has to offer.  This time of year I think "quick and easy" for everything - it's starting to get too warm to handle anything else!  Drop me a line and let me know what you
look forward to this
time of year!

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Ahh, at last Spring has sprung and summer is right around the corner! That means that fresh, locally grown produce is starting to show up in our local produce markets and grocery stores. One of my favorites is the Florida or Southeastern grown cantaloupe. Up until now, cantaloupes have been coming from Central America .  Although they may sometimes be tasty, they tend to be somewhat smaller and just don't ignite my taste buds like the local varieties do. Expect to see U.S grown cantaloupes from May until around October. California actually grows about 70% of the crop, followed by Texas and Arizona , although lopes are grown in most states that have a long enough growing season. 
Not only do cantaloupes taste great, but they are known as a "Superfood" for your skin and immune system.
After having handled literally thousands of cantaloupes each year as they came off our truck at our produce market, we have a pretty good idea of how to tell the good ones from the bad ones. Our one word of caution when selecting a cantaloupe is to not shake them!  This simply dislodges the seeds and you end up with a slushy mess when you cut it. Once the seeds are dislodged, the melon will start to rot instead of ripen.  If the melons are picked locally and not shipped halfway across the country, you will usually find them with a slight green netting or a golden color. You can buy them either way, just make sure to let them ripen on your counter. Before cutting the lope, its skin should be golden and may be starting to indent. They are often picked prior to being ripe and need several days at room temperature to ripen. If your lope ripens before you are ready to eat it, be sure to store it in the refrigerator where it can keep 7 to 10 days. Cantaloupes are sensitive to ethylene gases and can over-ripen quickly. If you've purchased two or three melons on sale, store them on the kitchen counter, check them daily for ripeness, and refrigerate them as soon as you judge them ready.
Begin by cutting the cantaloupe in half. Using a spoon, scoop out the seeds. Remove and discard the strings as well. The melon can then be cut into slices, quarters, wedges, or chunks
and served by itself or in a fruit salad combo as a side dish, for dessert or breakfast.
And last, save the seeds for the birds and squirrels - they love them!