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The Healthy Family Meals Newsletter, Issue #121 Happy Memorial Day
May 22, 2009

Welcome! Learn How to Combine Healthy Recipes with Family Adventure!

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Kindy's Musings....

As your family dietitian, I will be scoping out the most relevant research and news that you can use to help your family make healthy nutrition and wellness choices.


Blessings in Tough Times: Rediscovering Community

As we celebrate those who gave our country freedom, let us also remember the importance of healthy families and communities this Memorial Day weekend.

In a recent article, Chuck Colson shares, "As bad as things are, I’ve also seen good things emerge. Many Americans themselves are rethinking their priorities. Americans, maybe, are relearning important lessons: the need to lean on our faith, depend on one another, and to create a sense of community—the kind we forget about in our affluence, but which I remember from my childhood."

"I grew up during the Great Depression. Few complained about hardships; we were too busy helping worse-off neighbors. And we’re seeing the same attitudes develop today. For instance, when a Texas woman recently lost her home to foreclosure, she cried as she watched it auctioned off. Observing her, another woman impulsively bid on the house, won, and then gave it back to its original owner—a total stranger.

Why did she do it? Her answer was, “People need to help each other, and that’s all there is to it.”

Other Americans—newly on tight budgets—are discovering that it’s much nicer to eat a home-cooked meal as a family than to grab a burger somewhere. Others are opening their homes to adult children who can no longer afford their own apartments—and enjoying family life once more.

Another surprising benefit of renewed community spirit is that history tells us crime rates will go down. An extensive study by Harvard University, the University of Chicago, and the Kaiser Institute, found only one reliable predictor of crime rates in a community: whether it had, or lacked, a strong sense of community values and a willingness to impose those values on public space—what researchers called “community cohesion.” Crime was low in neighborhoods where people felt free to discipline neighborhood kids caught skipping school or scrawling graffiti on walls.

Sociologist James Q. Wilson found that, contrary to conventional wisdom, crime always drops in hard times. “The Depression pulled families together, and this cohesion inhibited crime,” he writes.

Be inspired to invite your neighbor or another family over for a meal this weekend and enjoy the fellowship!


Read the latest food trends and happenings with the links below:





Mexican Bean Dip

Full of beans, this dip is high in fiber and in taste. Serve with tortilla chips or pita bread.


1 1/2 cups kidney, pinto, or black beans, cooked or canned, drained

1/4 cup tomato paste

2 teaspoons red wine vinegar

2 teaspoons chili powder

1/2 teaspoon ground cumin

1/4 teaspoon garlic powder

2 tablespoons green onion, chopped

Puree the beans in a blender or a food processor until they’re smooth. Transfer them to a medium bowl and add the remaining ingredients. Mix everything well.

Makes 8 servings

Source: Your family will love these sample recipes from Quick Meal Solutions. And for more of Nissenberg’s family-friendly suggestions, visit

What will your family do for healthier MEALTIMES?

Celebrating Healthy Families 2009

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Thanks for reading and have a great week!

Kindy --Your Family Dietitian

Copyright (c) 2009,

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