Try this delicious, Vitamin C and antioxidant rich pineapple salsa. It features a balance of sweet, salty, sour and fiery flavors. Pair it with pork and with grilled fish, on tacos, whole grain pita chips or as an accompaniment to breakfast eggs.
New York Times Recipe
Playing outdoors is a form of exercise that promotes well-being and wholesome physical and social emotional development. We are naturally drawn to active play outdoors: it allows exploration of the environment, development of muscle strength and coordination, and gains in self-confidence. Playing actively outdoors also increases flexibility, fine and gross motor skills and is related to the development of a wide variety of physical skills, including those involved in sports.
Early childhood provides a great need for physical exercise and activity and a chance to use their muscles to run, swing, jump, skate and ride a bike, and to be out in the fresh air and sunshine (appropriately protected from the sun's rays, of course). They like to use their whole body when they play outdoors, and find such physical activities interesting and challenging.
When children are pushed in a swing, or when they propel a swing themselves, they engage all of their muscles to hold on, balance and coordinate their body to the rhythm of moving back and forth. Swinging provides children with first-hand knowledge and experience of cause and effect and of understanding spatial learning, such as up and down and back and forth. Also, while swinging, children get a chance to see the world from a new perspective. To provide comfort and security, use a swing with a back support and a child restraint. For the littlest ones, start out slowly and push from the front, so your face is in full view. Play a peek-a-boo game for even more fun!
Toys that require balance and coordination, such as skates, scooters and bikes, teach children new skills, encourage the development of self-confidence and satisfy their interest in exploration. Choose sports equipment that has a grow-with-me feature, going from beginner to advanced, so children have the opportunity to master skills at their own pace. The beginner mode will give children that extra boost of confidence they need when learning a new skill. As children progress to the advanced mode, they can practice their newly acquired skills and try new and exciting challenges when they're ready.
So, take the children outside to play. It's a wonderful way to spend the day!
P.h.D., Former Director of Child Research at Fisher-Price
It’s April in Austin. This is the time to be outside. In a few months it will blistering hot, but now, the weather is perfect.
Central Texas offers almost endless opportunities for outdoor activities for you and your children to do in nature. We have lakes, an amazing selection of public parks, and hike and bike trails. Zilker Park alone offers Barton Springs Pool , the Austin Nature & Science Center, the Zilker Botanical Gardens, and the Prehistoric Park – where you can find actual dinosaur footprints.
We often talk about the value of eating well in this space, but physical activity is as important as what we eat for building a healthy body. The key to building a child with a lifelong love for the outdoors is to introduce your child to the joys of being physically active in nature while she is young.
So get on a lake, dig a garden, find an outdoor kids or family yoga class or simply take a walk. If you do go outside please send us a picture – tell us what you’re doing to enjoy the beautiful weather we’re having and we’ll post your picture to HealthStart’s Facebook and Instagram pages.
Whatever you do, go get your hands dirty.
Robin Herskowitz, Founder
Soup is perfect for all times of year, but since this Spring has decided to cool off once more our featured recipe for today is a nutrient powerhouse to warm your being. Featuring Fiber, Protein and Iron rich Cannellini white beans alongside antioxidant, vitamin c, and calcium rich Spinach this yummy soup will feed the whole family and their bodies!
Check out Delish.com, one of our favorite recipe sites for a variety of yummy, Spring approved soups!
Celebrate the fresh tastes of spring with this delicious and nutritious salad. It combines the invigorating tastes of strawberry, rhubarb, lemon and mint with hazelnut for a antioxidant, fiber and protein packed side-dish the whole family is sure to love!
Make a night of creating these fun, nutritious "instant" oatmeal breakfast jars with the whole family. Allow the kids to make their own flavor combinations and fill the jars themselves.
Instant Oats provide protein, iron, and fiber to feed your whole body. Add in your favorite fruits, nuts, and / or treats to add in vitamin c and antioxidants. And the easy / short prep time mixed with no refrigeration required ensures the whole family starts the day off right with a healthy, filling breakfast.
Flavor Combination Ideas
You can use fresh or freeze dried fruit (no sugar added). It’s crunchy and sweet.
Freeze-dried fruit maintains all of it’s vital nutrients and vibrant flavor, making it a convenient shelf-stable healthy option. There is no refrigeration needed for storage.
Apples & Cinnamon: ¼ cup freeze Dried Apples, 1/4 tsp Cinnamon, pinch of granulated stevia, or granulated sweetener of choice
Raspberries & Dark Chocolate or Cacao Nibs: ¼ cup freeze dried Raspberries & 2 Tbsp dark chocolate chips or nibs
Monkey Mix: ¼ cup freeze dried banana chips, 1 Tbsp coconut flakes, 1 Tbsp dark chocolate chips or nibs
Triple Berry: ¼ cup freeze dried triple berry mix & a pinch of granulated stevia, or granulated sweetener of choice
Blueberries & Cream: ¼ cup freeze dried blueberries, a pinch of powdered vanilla (huge health benefits in powdered compared to liquid extract), & a pinch of granulated stevia or granulated sweetener of choice)
Peaches & Cream: ¼ cup freeze dried peaches, pinch of powdered vanilla (huge health benefits in powdered compared to liquid extract), & a pinch of granulated stevia, or granulated sweetener of choice)
Strawberry & Banana: 2 Tbsp freeze dried strawberries, 2 Tbsp freeze dried banana & a pinch of granulated stevia, or granulated sweetener of choice
OR Get Creative and Build Your Own!
Source: Clean FoodTM Crush
Packed with Vitamin C / Antioxidants, Omega 3 Fatty Acids, and Protein, these Healthy Avocado Brownies make a wonderful dessert or snack for the whole family. Let the kids help you make them and teach them that there are several healthy alternatives to traditional sugar and grain flour.
Volunteers keep HealthStart in business. We depend on groups like the University of Texas Chi Beta Delta (XBD) Sorority. XBD supported HealthStart’s Austin Gives Miles-Austin Marathon water stop this past February 18 with 31 volunteers. This was their second year to help staff HealthStart’s AGM water stop and their members made it look easy AND fun. XBD will once again be helping us meet our mission at HealthStart’s 6th Annual I Heart HealthStart Gala! Way to go Chi Beta Delta!
Year Two Austin Gives Miles-Austin Marathon is a wrap!
On Sunday, February 18th, 125+ people laced up their sneakers to run and/or volunteer for #TeamHealthStart during the Austin Marathon. A big THANK YOU to our runners and volunteer groups including Chi Beta Delta, Alpha Phi Omega, Texas Spirits and others who staffed HealthStart's Mile 12 water stop. Your support means everything!
Our Austin Gives Miles (AGM)/Austin Marathon campaign built awareness for HealthStart's mission and raised money for our children's science-based health education programming. Generous support from Qualcomm, and generous matches from the Moody Foundation and L’aiglon Foundation helped us raise a $24,635!
As always we had a super fun time with AGM. We can't wait to see you on the course again next year!
A farmers market is a great place to bring your kids for so many reasons! A visit to the local farmers market can provide your family with wholesome, healthy food while supporting your local community.
Benefits of a Family Visit to the Farmers Market
Join us at the Texas Farmers Markets at Lakeline Farmers Market on Saturdays March 24, April 14, and May 19 from 10 am to 12 pm and Mueller Farmers Market on Sundays March 25, April 15, and May 20 from 11 am to 1 pm.
Want to help? Contact HealthStart's Outreach Coordinator, Erin Damm, for more information.