Lisa Monroe

After Losing 100+ Pounds, Grocery Store Owner Promotes Healthier Options

By November 16, 2020

Immokalee is an area where healthy food options are limited — sometimes called a food desert or food swamp­— in Collier County, Florida. LeGrand Caribbean Market is an oasis in that desert, at least for the large migrant population that shops there. They are people who work long hours, live in shared housing without their own kitchens, and speak as many as nine different languages — including Spanish and Haitian Creole. Franck LeGrand Jr. speaks all of them. LeGrand runs the food market that his late father ran before him, in part because he knows the community relies on…

COVID-19 Response: Connecting Residents Spread Across Hundreds of Miles through Blue Zones Activate Mailboxes

By September 11, 2020

When COVID-19 precautions first went into effect in Barry County, Michigan, Blue Zones Activate Barry County was just transitioning into the community and it was unclear how the pandemic would impact the program. However, with a little creativity and a lot of collaboration among community organizations, the program continues to stay on track with its plan to improve health and promote better nutrition in the community. Allison Troyer Wiswell, Activate Barry County Director, said the initial challenge this spring was thinking of ways for Activate Barry County “to reach out and communicate with people without being able to congregate.” Barry…

Pinolillo — The Traditional Antioxidant-Rich Costa Rican Beverage That Will Replace Your Iced Coffee Habit

By August 16, 2020

Pinolillo is a traditional, nutrient-dense beverage that’s widely consumed in Costa Rica, home to some of the longest-lived people in the world, as well as Honduras and Nicaragua. The drink is so popular in Nicaragua, in fact, that people there affectionately call themselves “Pinoleras” and “Pinoleros.” Also called pinol or pinole, pinolillo is enjoyed both hot, much like hot cocoa, and cold, like iced coffee or horchata. Pinolillo has a slightly gritty texture and can be served sweetened or unsweetened but may have a mildly bitter taste when not sweetened. In countries like Costa Rica where pinolillo has been widely…

Lost 140 Pounds, Greatly Reduced Sleep Apnea Symptoms, Recovered from Prostate Cancer Surgery With Blue Zones Lifestyle Shift

By July 22, 2020

In the food industry for most of his life, Jeff Uher has always taken pride in making healthy nutritious food for others. Yet as a busy chef, he has not always taken good care of his own health. Four years ago, he got a wake-up call when he visited his doctor. He weighed almost 300 pounds and had high blood pressure and sleep apnea. Gradual Gaining Like many of us, the changes in Uher’s body had crept up on him so gradually that he had just accepted them little by little over a long period of time. A little overweight…