Healthy Choices

News and inspiration for healthy living in Northern California

September 6, 2013
Free food literacy fair at Midtown Farmers Market on Saturday

Taste food samples, shop for produce, view an art show, meet local chefs and take advantage of free health screenings Saturday at the free food literacy fair at the Midtown Farmers Market.
Assemblyman Roger Dickinson will be on hand to welcome attendees to the fair, held at the farmers market at 2020 J Street. A resolution by Dickinson has designated September "Food Literacy Awareness" month in California.
A highlight of the event will be the announcement of which of five vegetables won Capitol Heights Academy's "Veggie of the Year" award. Academy students from kindergarten through fifth grade taste-tested and judged sweet potatoes, tomatoes, beets, avocados and kale in a competition this week. Top chefs from the Sacramento region helped present the vegetables, with the California Food Literacy Center educating the students about fresh produce.
The fair will take place from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m., with announcements beginning at 10:30 a.m. Included will be a colorful "March of the Veggies," a parade of delectable costumes.

September 3, 2013
Free give-away of emergency kits in Natomas on Saturday

This Saturday, free emergency home kits will be available for the first 400 households who go to pick them up at the Celebrate Natomas Community Festival.

The its, given out by Hands On Sacramento and the Allstate Foundation, will include handy items such as flashlights, hand-crank radios, water bottles and backpacks.

The kits will be available on a first-come, first served basis on Saturday, Sept. 7, at the festival, which begins at noon and ends at 5 p.m.

The festival at South Natomas Community Park, 2921 Truxel Road, will feature games, fun events and live entertainment as well as the distribution of the kits.

August 9, 2013
Free eye clinic and health fair Saturday in Sacramento

A free clinic Saturday for uninsured people in Sacramento offers no-cost eye examinations and, if needed, free prescription eyeglasses.

For walk-in clients, the clinic will be open from 8 a.m. to noon. Appointments will be made until 4 p.m.

The event is a collaboration among VSP, which will provide its vision care mobile clinic, and public officials.

Sacramento Assemblyman Richard Pan and Senate President Pro Tem Darrell Steinberg and Sacramento City Council member Bonnie Pannell will be on hand to host the health fair and answer questions from the public.

The Community Health and Wellness Fair, held at the Florin Arts & Business Complex, 2251 Florin Road, will also feature free medical screenings, back-to-school backpacks and cooking demonstrations by local high school students.

May 20, 2013
Sacramento child entrepreneur launches healthy-eating app

Nicolas Cone describes himself as a "picky eater." But at his ripe old age of eight years, Nicolas has found a way to share what he does like to eat with other kids and families.

Turns out, he likes his food straight from the garden, and even enjoys cooking fresh foods.

So he's designed a mobile app and website called Nicolas' Garden to encourage other kids to dive into healthy eating by growing their own food, sharing their favorite recipes, supporting farmers' markets and playing games on the app.

He unveiled his creation at Soil Born Farm's annual "Day on the Farm" event in Rancho Cordova last weekend.

Now he's focusing his efforts on scoring a dinner with the Obamas, having been impressed by First Lady Michelle Obama's well-known fondness for gardening.

May 20, 2013
Sacramento Hunger Coalition offers free screening of documentary film

Sometimes being healthy boils down to the very essentials -- like having access to fresh, locally harvested fruits and vegetables and adequate protein.

That much is obvious.

But an estimated 50 million Americans -- including one in four children -- don't have the security of knowing where and when their next meal will come. Many live in the South Sacramento and other fresh-food challenged neighborhoods locally.

To spotlight this problem, the Sacramento Hunger Coalition is offering a free screening for "A Place at the Table," a documentary exploring that food insecurity. A panel discussion will follow the screening, led by moderator Elaine Corn of Capital Public Radio.

Mark your calendar: Tuesday, May 21, at the Crest Theater in downtown Sacramento.

Let us know what you think of the film in the comments below.
May 15, 2013
South Oak Park neighborhood celebrates fresh local produce

Say goodbye to one of Sacramento's food deserts and say hello to healthy, locally grown produce, which is coming to South Oak Park on Sunday, May 26.

The USDA has designated South Oak Park as a "food desert," a place where produce is scarce and finding healthy, affordable food is harder than it should be.

This means residents had to shop at convenience stores, typically stocked with high-sodium, preservative-heavy foods.

But one local corner market, Sam's Market at 23rd Avenue (and 42nd Street) is turning green (and all the other rainbow colors of fruits and veggies), adding fresh produce to its shelves.

Don't miss out on the celebration as neighbors gather May 26 to celebrate this transition toward a healthier community. Prizes, games, face-painting, free health screenings, cooking and gardening demos will add to the festivities.

A cornerstone of the celebration will be the opening of a summer-long Urban Farm Stand, which will set up every Sunday through September.

May 14, 2013
Heart association 'goes red' for women's heart health

Breast cancer awareness has pink; women's heart health has the color red.

We can thank the American Heart Association's national Go Red for Women movement, which hosted about 450 Sacramentans recently at the Red Lion Woodlake Inn, for their campaign to educate women about risks for developing heart disease:

Turns out, more women than men die from heart attacks. One in three women will die of heart disease. But only one in five women is able to identify heart disease as the No. 1 threat to their health.

For those who think "It can't happen to me," here's a powerful, three-minute video:

About Healthy Choices

Cynthia CraftCynthia H. Craft began her reporting and editing career in Columbus, Ohio, after graduating from Ohio State University. She worked at a Dallas, Texas, newspaper as an editor, and then at the Los Angeles Times, as an editor and Capitol Bureau correspondent. After working as editor in chief at the California Journal, Craft went to Lima, Peru, for three years as a visiting professor of journalism at Peruana Universidad de Ciencias Aplicadas. She was a fellow in 2012 at the National Library for Medicine in Washington, D.C. at the National Institute for Health. She's currently The Sacramento Bee's senior writer on health, a position made possible by a grant from The California Endowment.

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On Twitter: @cynthiahcraft.

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