Interactive Health Newsletter

Stress Management

Stress is a natural part of life. Having some stress in our lives is what motivates us to get up each morning and be productive. When stress becomes hard to manage it can have negative effects on overall health. This newsletter includes tips to manage time and techniques to relieve stress.

In this Issue:

  • Meal Planning
  • Fit Tip of the Month: Exercise for Stress Management
  • Preventive Focus: Hearing Screening
  • Webinar: Manage Time so it Doesn’t Manage You
  • Recipe of the Month: Cauliflower Fried Rice



Meal Planning

What’s for dinner tonight? Figuring out what you and your family are eating throughout the week, every week, can be exhausting and a source of stress and frustration. Meal planning at the start of the week introduces structure and calm to a hectic week. The more you plan at the start of the week, the easier and less stressful that week will be. When starting to meal plan, it’s important to keep your and your family’s schedule in mind. Get a sense of what events are taking place that week, and what days or nights are “cooking nights” versus “leftover nights.”

Get the family involved! Ask your spouse and your children what they would like to eat for the week. You could also include your family in the grocery shopping experience to help build excitement around meals.

Before you get started, take a few minutes to assess what you already have in the house. No one likes buying doubles or triples of a food item they already have at home. Trying to save money? Take time to check out the weekly ad circulars and learn what’s on sale before you get to the store. Once you have all your meals planned out, it’s time to go shopping!

When thinking of what foods to buy, focus on healthy food items such as fresh fruits and vegetables, whole grain products, lean proteins, healthy fats, and low-fat dairy. Avoid less healthy foods, usually found in the middle aisle of the store, like processed snacks, added sugars, and high sodium food products.

Looking to save time? Pre-chopped vegetables, pre-washed bagged lettuce, trimmed chicken cutlets, ground turkey patties, or stir-fry kits are great time savers.

Once you’ve purchased all the food you need at the store, decide when to cook everything. You can meal prep for the week on Saturday or Sunday or devote a few hours to chopping and prepping key ingredients. You can cook meals every other day and utilize leftovers in between days. It’s up to you!

When it comes to meal planning, it’s all about PLANNING! The more you plan, the more successful your week will be. Take the time to plan your meals, you won’t regret it.

Resources: Mayo Clinic;

Erica Lokshin, MS, RDN, LDN – Registered Dietitian/Health Coach

Preventive Focus

Hearing Screening

Forty-eight million people in the U.S. have trouble hearing with one or both of their ears and people of all ages can be affected by gradual hearing loss. It is important to not wait until you show signs of hearing loss, but rather ask your doctor to perform a hearing screening at your regular examination. A basic hearing evaluation usually includes a quick look in the ear canal with a special light (otoscope) to assess for infection, injury, or other conditions (such as buildup of ear wax). They may also perform other checks to assess the sounds you can hear.

Your doctor may also refer you to a hearing specialist (audiologist) for more specific tests and treatments if you:

  • Feel your hearing has changed
  • Have a history of exposure to loud noise, or
  • Have family or friends notice that you’re having trouble understanding what people are saying, especially when other people are talking or when there is background noise.

To protect your hearing, begin by recognizing if the noise around you is too loud. If you or others need to shout to be heard, the sound is too loud and may damage your hearing over time. Other tips are:

  1. Turn down the volume of the music, TV, or radio.
  2. Walk away from the loud noise.
  3. Take breaks from the noise.
  4. Use hearing protection devices such as earplugs and earmuffs when you cannot avoid loud sounds.

Janet Kirchen, RN, BSN – Immediate Intervention Health Coach

Resources: Interactive Health; Centers for Disease Control

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“Food is the center of most social gatherings in the Latino culture, but some challenges may exist when trying to adopt healthier eating habits. Through our coaching sessions, this individual learned the importance of having a plan to face these unique social challenges and pressures. He appreciated that I was familiar with his foods, understood the traditions and customs of Latinos and could communicate in the language he felt most comfortable.”

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Fit Tip of the Month

Exercise for Stress Management

Consistent exercise is an excellent, natural way to relieve your stress! But, what if trying to get into an exercise routine is one of the things that’s creating your stress?!

This month we will give you some tips to increase the success rate of getting regular exercise into your week.

  1. Define and write out your fitness goals and determine if these goals fit into your overall health goals.
  2. The American Heart Association goal is 150 minutes of moderate exercise per week – break that down to about 25 minutes per day and it seems much more manageable.
  3. Create a plan each week for your exercise and stick to it like you would important work meetings.
  4. There is a higher chance of success if you can exercise in the morning.
  5. For greater ease of exercising in the morning, lay out exercise clothes the night before or sleep in them.
  6. If you exercise after work, pack your exercise bag the night before, bring it to work, change before you leave, and head straight to the gym.
  7. Sign up for a class –make it a part of your schedule and you will have built in group support.
  8. Fit exercise in everywhere you can: always take the stairs, park further away from destinations and walk the rest of the way, walk or bike to work, make more of your errands walking or biking errands, plan active date nights, have evening family walks after dinner, or perform floor exercises while watching TV during commercial breaks.

Suzanne Toon, MS, CPT, Health Coach

Resources: Mayo Clinic

Always consult your physician before beginning this or any exercise program. For more exercises or ideas, visit

Businessman Late for Work !


Manage Time so it Doesn’t Manage You

Have you ever felt that there weren’t enough hours in the day? You are not alone! Many of us know that we need to manage our time more effectively, but we’re not sure where to begin or how to make improvement. Efficient time management and prioritizing can increase productivity, enhance your work/life balance, and reduce stress. Join this webinar to learn about time management skills and effective strategies to get the most out of your day. We will discuss different time-saving techniques for a variety of lifestyles and address the benefits and disadvantages of multitasking.

Thursday, August 16, 2018
12:00pm – 12:45pm (Central)

Register Now

After registering you will receive a confirmation email containing information about joining the webinar.

A recorded version of the webinar will be available for viewing at a later date on the Interactive Health member website.

Recipe of the Month


Cauliflower Fried Rice

This dish is a healthy and convenient take on the classic recipe Fried Rice. Swapping rice for cauliflower is a wonderful way to save calories and increase fiber intake. This dish also incorporates edamame, an easy and healthy plant-based protein. This dish is perfect for a quick go-to dinner for you or your family.


1 head of cauliflower, washed and cut into florets or 1 bag of riced cauliflower
1 tablespoon olive oil, divided
2 eggs, beaten
1/2 cup edamame, fresh or thawed
2 carrots, peeled and diced
1 onion, diced
1 tablespoon sesame oil
1 tablespoon reduced sodium soy sauce
1/4 cup scallions, diced
1 tablespoon sesame seeds


  1. Rice the cauliflower by adding florets into a food processor. Pulse about 15-20 times until it has a consistency like rice. Depending on the size of your food processor you may have to pulse the florets in smaller batches. Be sure not to over pulse or else it will turn mushy. Or use ready-made riced cauliflower.
  2. In a heated, non-stick skillet add 1 teaspoon olive oil. Once warm, scramble both eggs.
  3. Add remaining 2 teaspoons olive oil and then add the riced cauliflower, edamame, carrots and onions. Stir to combine and cook for about 10 minutes.
  4. Drizzle sesame oil and soy sauce over rice and stir to combine.
  5. Garnish with scallions and sesame seeds.

Nutritional Information Per Serving (Serves 5)

Calories: 148
Total Fat: 9 grams
Saturated Fat: 2 gram
Cholesterol: 74 milligrams
Protein: 7 grams
Total Carbohydrates: 10 grams
Dietary Fiber: 4 grams
Sugars: 4 grams
Sodium: 145 milligrams

Recipe adopted from:

Erica Lokshin, MS, RDN, LDN
Registered Dietitian / Health Coach

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