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Live Mindfully

Following a mindful breathing technique is one of the simplest ways to calm the mind and body and refocus in times of stress. If you are feeling overwhelmed, take a moment to focus on your breath by following these steps: Become aware of your posture. Sit or stand up straight so you are alert, but not tense. You may wish to close your eyes. Breathe in through your nose. Pay attention to where you feel your breath. Do you feel… Continue reading »

We are highlighting some of the best smartphone apps for health and wellness. Below are top nutrition apps to help you keep track and make good food choices. Shopwell: Better Food Choices Shopwell is a food label reading guide that you can carry right in your pocket. The app asks you what your diet and health concerns are, what ingredients you may want to avoid in your food, and any dietary elements that you are hoping to get more of… Continue reading »

The Department of Agricultural and Human Sciences is pleased to present our 2020 Eloise S. Cofer Lecture. This year we are fortunate to have Chef Cheetie Kumar. Chef Kumar is a James Beard Best Chef Southeast Finalist and owner of Garland restaurant in Raleigh. She will share with us two dishes that showcase southern ingredients with bold Asian flavors. You don’t want to miss this opportunity to learn from Cheetie new techniques to introduce new flavors into your healthy diet.… Continue reading »

Both the amount and types of food we consume contribute to whether our way of eating is healthy. Check out this great handout from our colleagues at NC EFNEP with tips for how to smart-size your portions. A portion is what you serve yourself or what a restaurant gives you–you can also think of this as a “helping.” The reality is that a portion is sometimes larger than it should be. Use your hand as a guide to estimate a… Continue reading »

Not being able to spend time with friends and family can be difficult. Fortunately, these days there are a number of great ways to connect virtually. One of my favorites is a virtual game night. I used to love having game nights with my friends. Now that social distancing is the new normal, we still have game night, but on the computer.  There are a lot of free websites that have converted classic board games into online play. Schedule a… Continue reading »

Let’s face it, the holidays often revolve around activities and gatherings that include food. It can be difficult for those of us who are trying to make smarter, healthier food choices to be in environments where unhealthy sweets and treats are everywhere, especially when people we love are the ones offering us these foods.  Family food pushers are even trickier to deal with than co-workers or friends. Luckily, there are ways to avoid giving in to food pushers without causing… Continue reading »

COVID-19 has caused some of our favorite events to be either placed on hold or canceled completely. The NC State Fair is a longstanding North Carolina tradition that has been canceled this year for the first time since 1945.  Some people will miss the rides and the exhibits, but many people visit the fair just for its unique food offerings. Unfortunately, many times these highly sought-after foods are packed full of fats and sugars that are not our healthiest options.… Continue reading »

What’s up with vegetarianism? This year, vegetarian awareness week will mark me being vegetarian for 6 years. There are many reasons that people decide to stop eating meat – for me it was to lower my environmental footprint. For others, it can be a religious or cultural practice, a strategy to lower their grocery budget, an eating pattern to improve their health, or a way to avoid the harming of animals. There are a lot of subcategories of vegetarianism and… Continue reading »

September 12th is Mindfulness Day. Mindfulness is a key component of the Eat Smart, Move More, Weigh Less and Eat Smart, Move More, Prevent Diabetes programs. Take a moment today or this week to practice mindfulness. Mindfulness is simply defined as being present in any particular moment. To go deeper, it involves being conscious and accepting of one’s thoughts, feelings, and emotions during the moment. Mindfulness has been studied and practiced around the world to show the benefits in everyday… Continue reading »

Back to school season can be stressful in a normal year, but with COVID-19 and switching to virtual or hybrid schooling plans this year is bringing extra challenges. In our programs, we discuss the importance of mindfulness and managing stress as strategies to reach our health goals. Here are a few strategies that may help you manage stress and stay on track through this difficult time. Regular Exercise We know that exercise helps improve our physical health, but did you… Continue reading »