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2013 Defeat Diabetes® Month Calendar
Diabetes is a life-altering and life-threatening disease. People diagnosed with the disease are at greater risk for heart attacks, strokes, kidney disease, blindness, amputations, as well as incurring serious financial and emotional hardship.
Knowing the risks, recognizing the warning signs, and pursuing healthier eating habits and regular physical exercise, is critical to preventing diabetes or effectively managing the disease.
Lifestyle changes can be tough. So, we’re giving you an entire month of activities to get you started on the right track. Some of the regular activities include: New Fruit and Meatless Mondays, Take the Stairs Tuesday, Water Wednesday, Walk from the Back of the Parking Lot Thursday, and New Veggie Friday. Each weekend is dedicated to physical activity and getting outdoors.
Below is a calendar of activities, articles, downloads, tools and cartoons as well as some links to other sites with interesting information. Each day review the activities for the day and click the links to get more information or to complete the activity.
1 New Fruit Monday - Coconuts are nutritious and from a culinary stand point, very versatile. Found throughout tropical and subtropical areas, every part of the coconut palm can be used by humans in some manner and has significant economic value.
Meatless Mondays - Going meatless, even once a week may reduce your risk of chronic and preventable diseases including cancer, cardiovascular disease, diabetes and obesity. It can also reduce your carbon footprint and conserve fresh water and fossil fuel.
Meatless Monday Recipe
Pasta Primavera Courtesy of Meatless Mondays.
2 Take the Stairs Tuesday - Walking up and down the stairs is good cardiovascular exercise that’s easy to incorporate into your daily routine. So, every Tuesday, make it a habit to bypass the elevator and take the stairs in as many places as you can. When you start be sure to allow a few extra minutes so you can pace yourself.
Islets of Humor™ Cartoon - Wellness Kit
3 Sugary Drinks – Sugar Sweetened Beverages is the single largest contributor of empty calories to our diet. Drink water instead!
A cool infographic on sugar in your diet
Walk, bike or take mass transit to work. Many of us live within a short distance of where we work. People who take mass transit to work are considered active because most commutes also require a walk from the home to the transit stop and office.
4 Walk From the Back of the Parking Lot Thursday. If you must drive to conduct your errands, park in the back of the lot or a block away to add some extra steps to your daily routine. Studies show that even 5 and 10 minute bursts of activity help!
Is diabetes stressing you out? Learn some techniques for beating stress.
Islets of Humor™ Cartoon - Depression leads to diabetes
5 New Veggie Friday - Endive is delicious with a crisp texture and a sweet, nutty flavor with a pleasant mild bitterness. Its great served raw or cooked, easy to prepare and available year round.
You may not end up with the prowess of the Green Arrow, but learning how to handle a bow and arrow will provide you with many physical benefits. Archery is physically demanding yet, can still be undertaken by those with disabilities as well as able-bodied persons.
6 Visit a Garden - Although you can visit a garden almost anytime and find something wonderful, April is a particularly good time to visit, because so many things are blooming. Botanical Gardens, arboretums, specialty gardens and even historic properties are good choices for a spring garden visit.
It’s an active event that allows you plenty of opportunity for exploring, sharing, conversation and some easy physical activity outdoors.
Public gardens, parks and arboretums are usually free or inexpensive. Private and specialty gardens may have a stiffer price tag so don’t forget to check for rates!
While visiting a local garden think about what you might put in your own.
7 What's Your A1C Day? Defeat Diabetes Foundation recommends that individuals with diabetes, and those at risk for developing Type 2 diabetes, have a regular A1c test performed by their doctor. Learn more about the A1c and why it’s important for your health.
Plan/Plant Your Garden - April is National Gardening Month, so join the celebration. Whether it's a small container garden with a single tomato plant, a square foot garden or something larger, help make your community a greener healthier place in which to live.
Think about planting a vegetable garden. Not only does a vegetable garden provide an amazing cost saving for food, it is a much better use of available land than grass or ornamental plantings. Gardening also provides healthy physical activity that every member of the family can participate in, regardless of age. Gardening gets you in touch with where your food comes from and it tastes better too!
Gardens Large and Small - a downloadable article that includes resources to help you plan your garden.
National Gardening Association - offers the Web's largest and most respected array of gardening content for consumers and educators, ranging from general information and publications to lessons and grants.
Kids gardening - an offshoot of the National Gardening Association, this website provides information for kids, parents and teachers to make the gardening experience more fun.
Shirley's Vegetable Garden - Tips for gardening from veteran gardener, Shirley Barriger.
8 New Fruit Monday - Called "fruit of the angels" by Christopher Columbus, papayas were once considered exotic, though they can now be found in markets throughout the year.
Meatless Monday Recipes
Courtesy of Meatless Monday - Black Bean Corn Tamales
9 For people with diabetes and those at risk for developing diabetes, regular physical activity is crucial for long term good health. So, it’s important to figure out ways to incorporate regular physical activity into your daily routine.
Take the Stairs Tuesday - Stop at the top, while holding onto the handrail, place your toes at the edge of the steps and lower your heels. This is a great stretching exercise.
10 Water Wednesday - Sugary drinks are the largest single source of calories in the American diet and account for half of all added sugars Americans consume. So drink water today and lighten up on your calorie intake!
Try a New Whole Grain - The recently released USDA Dietary Guidelines for Americans encourage Americans to increase their intake of whole grain foods to at least three servings per day. Quinoa is a great alternative to rice and gluten free too!
Most of us spend far too much time at desks. But, just because we’ve become office dwellers doesn’t mean we can’t squeeze some physical activity in at our desks. Start adding a few to your routine each day. Exercises to do at your desk.
11 Walk From the Back of the Parking Lot Thursday. If you are shopping forego the cart if you can, this will add a little weight to your workout, which is good for your bones.
Islets of Humor™ Cartoon - Dog Walks Man
According to "Oral Health in America: A Report of the Surgeon General," the relationship between type 1 and type 2 diabetes and periodontal disease is often referred to as the "sixth complication" of the disease. Learn more about diabetes and dental complications.
Dental Hygiene Tips
12 New Veggie Friday – Asparagus, tender spears of green goodness. Asparagus season is short, so don’t delay! Asparagus flashcard
Go bowling! Bowling is enjoyed by over 95 million people worldwide, making it one of the most popular sports in the world. Bowling is an easy sport people of all ages and physical abilities can participate in year round.
13 Take a Trip to the Zoo, Animal Park, Aquarium, Nature Preserve, Wild Life Refuge Area, Wetland or Nature Center Not only will you get some great exercise walking around looking at the exhibits, but spring is also the perfect time to check out all the cute baby animals! Wetlands and wild life refuges are also great places to watch wildlife of all types
Find a Wildlife Refuge in your area.
14 Family Dinners Matter - Idealized in the 1950's, the family dinner used to be an important ritual in our daily lives. This important ritual can and should be a part of your family routine. Learn why family dinners matter.
Orienteering is a sport for the whole family as well as a “family of sports”. Participants use a topographical map, usually a specially prepared orienteering map, which they use to find check points in a designated area. The terrain is diverse and usually unfamiliar. Challenge your navigating skills today!
15 New Fruit Monday - Dates are the naturally lowest moisture whole fruit grown making them nature’s only naturally dry fruit.
Meatless Monday Recipe
Quinoa Chili from our friends at Meatless Mondays
16 Take the Stairs Tuesday – Today, add a little more of challenge by doing every other flight double time!
With the new focus on health, and the preponderance of “low” diets -- low fat, low sodium, and low cholesterol, the food industry has been making claims about their products that have led to much confusion in the marketplace. This often makes it difficult for consumers to make appropriate choices about packaged foods. Learn the ins and outs of nutrient content claims.
17 Water Wednesday – 60 – 70% of the human body is made up of water. Staying hydrated is good for you.
Amaranth - Is it a veggie, grain, flower or all three? Amaranth is not in the grass family; it is, actually, a relative of lamb’s-quarters and Cockscomb and is not considered a cereal grain. However, since it is used much like cereal grains, it is often called a pseudo-cereal.
Islets of Humor™ Cartoon - Carbs are back in style
18 Walk From the Back of the Parking Lot – By parking in the back of the lot you’ll get a spot quicker and save gas not circling for a spot near the store entrance.
People take their feet for granted and they shouldn’t, because they hold our body weight and allow us to walk, run, jump and dance. Without properly functioning feet we lose our mobility and a measure of our freedom. Learn your risk for diabetes related foot problems.
19 New Veggie Friday - There are hundreds of cultivars of lettuce organized for leaf shape and color, field and shelf life. Lettuce also varies widely in taste and texture. Some lettuces are mild and tender while others are crunchy or bitter. While accumulating a worldwide gene pool of lettuces, the USDA found red, yellow varieties, and blue-green varieties of lettuce. Explore different types of lettuce.
Roller skating, inline skating, roller blading are all personal wheeled forms of transportation and exercise! 26 million Americans skate on a regular basis. Get Rolling!
20 Experience the annual bird migration - Bird "flyways" provide an opportunity to see seasonal visitors that might not be around all year. Birds Migration nifty website provides regional breakdown's of migratory birds, migration times, pictures, sounds and thumbnail information on each species. Need to know where you can see birds? Regional, state, national parks and Audubon Sanctuaries are all great places.
21 Go for a bike ride! Cycling is easy to incorporate into your life. In many parts of the U.S. you can cycle year-round, and build it into your daily routine by cycling to work and to do errands. Most people can continue cycling into their 70’s and 80’s. Start Biking.
Islets of Humor™ Cartoon - Bike Ride
22 New Fruit Monday From the outside, the cherimoya looks a bit pre-historic. But, open a cherimoya and you will discover a fragrant, ivory, custard-like flesh, hence its common name "custard apple."
Today is Earth Day so do ANYTHING outdoors: walk, bike, paddle, jump rope, or play volleyball. While you are out enjoying nature pick up any trash you see – mother nature will thank you.
Meatless Monday Recipes
Courtesy of Meatless Monday Lemon Asparagus Penne
23 Take the Stairs Tuesday – It can lower your bad cholesterol levels and raise your good cholesterol levels. It also relieves tension and stress that can have adverse effects on your heart.
Having trouble figuring out if food labeling terms such as cage free, grass fed and local have any meaning in your food choices? Read about the Nouveau content claims.
24 Water Wednesday – unless you live someplace where they frack tap water is okay and saves the environment from too much plastic.
Few people are indecisive about edible mushrooms. They either love them or hate them. Mushrooms have a lot to offer and are worthy of a place on your table and not just as an addition to pizza or a garnish with steak. Learn about edible fungi
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25 Walk from the back of the parking lot – Or better yet, since most errands are less than a mile from home walk or bike to do them today.
As a person with diabetes, cholesterol is one of the key health metrics you need to keep track of to make sure you don’t suffer some of the complications of diabetes. But what is cholesterol? Why is it important for our health?
26 New Veggie Friday – Spinach is nutritious and brimming with antioxidants. You can eat it raw or cooked. Spinach flashcard.
Dancing is a great way for people of all ages to get and stay in shape. Experts agree that dancing is a true sport and a valid form of exercise. Dancing uses, virtually, all of your body’s muscles: feet, calves, thighs, upper and lower back, abdominals, shoulders, neck and even arms get a workout while dancing.
Shy? Turn on the music and dance when no one is looking!
Islets of Humor™ cartoon – Salsa and Chips
Today is Arbor Day so plant a tree today! Trees are wonderful for our environment. They create green and shady spaces, help clean our atmosphere and, if properly selected, can also provide us with blossoms in the spring and fruit in the summer or fall. If planting for Arbor Day or any other time please consider planting a fruit tree.
27 One thing is certain, hiking is not walking, though walking, is a big part of hiking. Hiking is an outdoor activity which consists of walking over natural terrain in mountainous or other scenic areas. If the trail is paved, it's a walk not a hike. Get hiking!
28 Turn off the TV Week. Between television, computer use, video game playing and hundreds of mobile applications we spend way too much time staring at a video screen. So, this week cut out television viewing and video game playing, keep computer use to what is necessary for business or school and get outside! Don’t think too much video is a problem? Then, use this log for your family for a week to determine how much time they are spending in front of a video screen.
Family Physical Activity Links - With this handy reference tool, your family will never lack ideas for things to do in the great outdoors!
29 New Fruit Monday - Apricots are a true spring fruit and grow in northern latitudes. Apricot flashcard.
Want to learn more about other Fruits and Vegetables? Visit Know Your Fruits and Veggies for additional articles.
Meatless Monday Recipes
Courtesy of Meatless Monday - Mushroom Wellington
30 Take the Stairs Tuesday Climbing the stairs can add more years to your life, and in more ways than one. For one, it reduces the risk of injury because it increases muscle strength and power.
Fresh vs. Frozen? The good news is that whether it’s fresh, frozen, canned, dried or juiced when it comes to consuming fruits and vegetables ALL ways are good.
Defeat Diabetes Foundation is a non-profit 501(C)(3) charity dedicated to creating awareness about and preventing diabetes. If you have found any of the information we’ve provided to you this month valuable please take the time to make a small donation so that we can continue our work to Defeat Diabetes®.
Islets of Humor™ Cartoon - Diabetes Donations
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