BE COLORFUL with National Eating Healthy Day

ds-11189-nehd-2016-invitation-save-the-date-hr-jpgNational Eating Healthy Day is Wednesday, Nov. 2 and as the American Heart Association’s new +color campaign emphasizes, it’s important to BE COLORFUL. Because as the old saying goes, “you are what you eat.” On this iconic day, and throughout the entire month of November, the association wants to remind everyone that by adding more color to meals through fruits and vegetables, people can take simple yet significant steps to a more vibrant, healthier, longer life.

In an effort to improve the diet quality of 55 million Americans, the association’s +color campaign is educating consumers on fruits and vegetables and the benefits each has to one’s health. Fruits and vegetables typically have more nutrients with fewer calories than other less-healthy food choices. Eating a colorful variety may help you prevent heart disease, stroke and other illnesses. National Eating Healthy Day and +color provide important resources that can help our community members make healthier changes to their diet as easy as possible.

In the Greater Utica area, the American Heart Association held its second annual National Eating Healthy Day soup, salad, and sandwich contest. Participants submitted recipes for one or more of the three categories. A panel of National Eating Healthy Day volunteers reviewed the recipes to ensure they meet American Heart Association guidelines and selected the following winners:

Soup: Stuffed Pepper Soup, by Paula Bicking
Salad: 1st Watch Turkey Salad, by Melanie Miller
Sandwich: Turkey and Tomato Panini, by Hannah Gerhardt

The winning recipes will be available on National Eating Healthy Day at several locations in the Greater Utica area, including Mohawk Valley Community College, St. Elizabeth Medical Center, St. Luke’s Healthcare, SUNY Polytechnic Institute, and Utica College. Winning contestants will also attend the Healthy For Good Expo during America’s Greatest Heart Run & Walk Weekend on March 3rd at Utica College. Free samples of each recipe will be available from 11:00am-4:00pm, with food provided by Sodexo USA, Inc.

Stuffed Pepper Soup, by Paula Bicking
32 oz low-sodium chicken broth
32 oz low-sodium vegetable broth
2 c low-sodium beef stock/chicken water
1 lb ground chicken
2 tsp olive oil
2 c fresh diced green pepper or 1 pkg frozen
2 c fresh diced onion or 1 pkg frozen
2 c fresh diced red pepper or 1 pkg frozen
1 tsp marjoram
1 pkg Success Boil-In-Bag Rice
Garlic to taste
Onion powder to taste

Cook chicken in a frying pan with olive oil and ½ cup each of peppers and onions. Add fresh garlic. Add additional garlic and onion powder to taste. In a soup pot combine the chicken broth, vegetable broth, and half of the chicken stock with remaining peppers and onions. Start to bring to a boil, once chicken is completely cooked add all ingredients from frying pan into the soup pot. Add marjoram to the soup and stir.

Bring to a boil and let simmer about 30 minutes stirring occasionally. When ready to serve, add in one family pouch of Success Instant Brown Rice (remove rice from pouch and put directly in soup mixture). Bring back to a boil and cook approximately 15 minutes stirring occasionally until done. Soup is ready to serve. Note:  Can add the remainder chicken stock if needed.

In crock pot:
Cook chicken as indicated above. In crock pot combine all ingredients and cook on low throughout the day. About a half hour before serving, add Success brown rice to crock pot stirring occasionally until rice is cooked, then serve.

This receipt freezes well in small containers. You can add fresh rice when ready to eat. For a fall look add red, yellow, and green peppers. If you want a spicy recipe add some hot peppers.

1st Watch Turkey Salad, by Melanie Miller
2 c quinoa, cooked
1 c diced turkey breast
1 c broccoli, raw or steamed
½ c dried cranberries
¼ c cinnamon/cranberry crusted goat cheese, crumbled
Sesame ginger dressing (fat free) to taste
Combine salad ingredients, pour dressing over salad

Turkey and Tomato Panini, by Hannah Gerhardt
Topping Ingredients:
3 tbsp reduced-fat mayo
2 tbsp non-fat plain yogurt
2 tbsp shredded parmesan cheese
2 tbsp chopped basil
1 tsp lemon juice
Pepper to taste

Sandwich Ingredients:
8 oz sliced turkey
8 slices tomato
8 slices wheat bread
2 tsp canola oil

Combine topping mixture and put on bread. Add tomato and turkey. Cook on skillet until golden brown.

A free online toolkit is available for those interested in participating in National Eating Healthy Day.  Resources include easy-to-do, fun activities for the entire family, community, school and workplace; ideas for motivating others to eat healthier; and a variety of delicious, colorful recipes. To download the toolkit and other NEHD resources, visit  You can also register for the American Heart Association’s Healthy For Good for additional healthy eating tips.

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