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HealthBuzz October 19: Famous Vegans, Indoor Fitness for Kids, and Comforting Fall Recipes

It’s Friday and that means it time for a dose of healthy news before you head out to enjoy the weekend. This week’s headline includes a story about celebrities who are living healthier due to their vegan lifestyle. Another headline is an article about indoor fitness for kids that we shared at Nutritious America. And, don’t forget to look at the recipes we love which include a whole wheat chicken pot pie and a sparkling apple sangria recipe.

3 Free Weekly Meal Planner Worksheets Organize Healthy Homemade Food

After a long day of work the last thing you want to worry about is dinner. For those who want to get healthy and manage their grocery budget meal planning can be a big help. DIR is sharing three meal plan worksheets that you can print off for free! The worksheets can help you stick to meal plans at the store and you’ll be less likely to put a bunch of junk into your grocery cart! 

Meet Mr. Honeycrisp, the Man Behind Fall’s Most Popular (and Most Expensive) Apple

About every type of apples tastes the same, right? Wrong. Honeycrisp Apples’ taste is unmatchable compared to Granny Smith apples or Red Delicious apples. DIR’s managing editor recently interviewed David Bedford, the father of the Honeycrisp Apple. Read more about the most prestigious apple out right now!

More Vegan Celebrities Tout the Animal-Free Diet’s Benefits

Being a vegan means that you cut off any animal product from your diet, but it also changes your lifestyle. Vegans swear to not use any animals products or eat animals because it is morally wrong. Celebrities like Pink, Kristen Bell, and Travis Barker have made a healthy lifestyle change since becoming vegans.
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Meet Mr. Honeycrisp, the Man Behind Fall’s Most Popular (and Most Expensive) Apple

I walked in to the grocery store a couple of weeks ago to grab a few things and ended up grabbing a few things not on my list. Who doesn’t? I stopped dead in my tracks when I saw the front fruit display had traded peaches for Honeycrisp apples. After months and months without eating any apples, I was beside myself with excitement as I loaded up four softball-sized apples at $2.99 per pound.

Yep. I paid a three dollar per-pound price for a piece of fruit. And so have millions of other people. I am part of the reason the Honeycrisp craze has grown in to a full blown obsession rivaling only those who camp out for the first pumpkin spiced coffee of the season. I don’t eat any other kind of apple, and until a few years ago it had been several years since I’d even touched one. Honeycrisps are unlike any apple you’ve ever tried.

The Honeycrisp was developed at the University of Minnesota’s apple breeding program in 1960. It was a cross of the Macoun and Honeygold, a hybrid of the two apples that took more than 30 years to move to market. Between 1960 and 1991, the apple that is now known as the Honeycrisp was identified, tested, and introduced to market in 1991. That was 20 years ago. So where has this divine piece of fruit been hiding? I asked David Bedford, a research scientist and lead apple breeder at the University of Minnesota. This is Mr. Honeycrisp.

Once the Honeycrisp was released in 1991, Bedford explained it was a very grassroots effort to get the apple out there. They had to sell the seeds to the nurseries, who then sold saplings to the orchardists, who then had to plant and grow the trees. These aren’t like tomato vines, they take time, years in fact. Once the Honeycrisp trees were planted they had three to five years before they were fruit bearing.

An apple with no marketing budget and just some excitable word of mouth has grown to be the fifth most grown apple in the U.S, according to Bedford. “It’s a hometown kid without much promotion.” The apple really took off and joined the mainstream, Bedford explained, after Washington state growers got a hold of it. “Sixty percent of apples in the country are grown in Washington,” he said. “When they get behind something, you see it go mainstream.”
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Halloween Food Crafts for a Healthy and Delicious Way to Celebrate the Season

Whoever said you couldn’t play with your food likely never really knew the joy of eating. We certainly aren’t suggesting tossing handfuls of spaghetti across the table at your annoying little brother, but we do think that the fall season is perfect for a little crafting-meets-snacking.

Some of our favorite seasonal treats are perfect for gathering ’round the family, getting plenty messy, sharing lots of giggles, all while making something yummy to enjoy as we gear up for Halloween. Fun and delicious treats don’t have to be sugar bombs. These homemade treats are healthful and fun to eat, too!

Ready to dig in?

BROWN PAPER BAG POPCORN

Forget the microwave popcorn you think you know. With nothing more than a brown paper sack, whole popcorn kernels, and a microwave, you’ll have light and airy popcorn in minutes without the chemicals, calories, and sodium.


The kids will love helping you make this, whether it’s movie night or a Halloween party. Make the popcorn something special with our Cinnamon Raisin Popcorn treat, which is simply brown bag popcorn, cinnamon, and raisins.

To share with friends or handout at a school party, let the kids make Hand-O-Lanterns to decorate each brown paper sack. Just paint their palms orange, their fingers green, and press on to the bags. When the paint dries they can use black markers to draw pumpkin faces!


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HealthBuzz October 12: Organic Companies Anti-Prop 37, Sarah Palin’s Diet, and Healthy Caramel Apple Recipes

We’re just hours away from the weekend! So that means it’s time for a dose of healthy news from DIR and our friends. This week’s headlines include a story about major organic companies funding against GMO labeling, a lunch lady told to stop making healthier food, and caramel apple-inspired recipes for fall.

Sarah Palin’s Going Rogue by Writing a Diet and Fitness Book

If you can’t get enough of Sarah Palin then you’ll want to pick up her diet and fitness book when (and if) it is for sale, which she announced is in the works. It will be interesting to read and hear about the things in her book because the former Alaskan governor once bashed the idea of serving healthy snacks in schools. Do you think people will take the book seriously? Tell us what you think!

Paul Ryan Would Leave Joe Biden in the Dust if Politics Was Gym Class

Thursday’s presidential debate probably left some questions relating to America’s future answered and others unanswered. So we were questioning who would win the election depending on who has the best physical fitness and personal diet? Take a look at Congressman Paul Ryan’s and Vice President Joe Biden’s fitness routine and diet habits and tell us what you think!

Major Organic Brands, Like Kashi and Naked, Funding Anti-GMO Labeling Campaigns

The vote for California’s Prop 37 is next month and if it is passed it will radically change the processed food industry. Many Californians and organic brands like Clif Bar, Annie’s and Uncle Matt’s are in favor of Prop 37. However, other organic brands like Kashi, Naked, and Silk are donating thousands-to-millions of dollars to fund anti-GMO labeling campaigns. Do you think the organic companies shouldn’t be donating against GMO labeling and practice what they preach?
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Pimp That Recipe: Caramel Apples for Fall

By Abra Pappa for Nutritious America

Fall is not fall without caramel apples. At least to me. Crisp tart apples and sticky sweet caramel. Yum!

As a child, October meant caramel apples. We would travel to the farmers market to pick out the perfect caramel apple for the ride home. This much-anticipated treat was homemade by the farmer’s wife, with a fresh apple picked from the tree and dipped in a simple caramel sauce, made from sugar, heavy cream and sometimes butter. Then, as Halloween neared, my mother would come home with a big bag of apples and get to work on her own caramel apples for the family.


What was once the simplest and purest treat has turned into the simplest, fastest pre-packaged (and full of scary stuff) treat. Walk down the apple aisle of any grocery store this month and you will find “caramel apple wrappers” and packaged  “old fashioned caramel dip.” Although convenience has its place in today’s hustle and bustle world, I wonder if you have ever read the ingredients in that easy-to-grab dip?
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