Eau Claire and Chippewa Falls, Wis. – Harvest season in Wisconsin is right around the corner, and HSHS hospitals want you to reap the health benefits of Midwest-produced fruits, vegetables and dairy.
Dietitian Heather Krieger with HSHS Sacred Heart and St. Joseph’s hospitals says summer and fall produce like corn, zucchini, apples and cranberries can help your health from head to toe.
“Blueberries, cranberries, and other deeply colored berries contain antioxidants that have been shown to improve memory and act as an anti-inflammatory, while leafy greens like spinach and broccoli add important nutrients to grow healthy hair, fingernails and toenails.”
August in Wisconsin will bring an abundance of apples, beets, garlic and summer squash, which Krieger says are good foods for grilling and baking.
Health benefits of summer harvest:
- Apples provide necessary soluble fiber which helps lower your cholesterol level, your risk of diabetes, and your risk of developing asthma. Tip: leave the skin on because it contains half the fiber of the apple.
- Beets have been linked to significant improvement in blood flow and lower blood pressure if eaten consistently.
- Corn contains high levels of fiber which aids in digestion. It also provides valuable B vitamins such as folate, which is important during pregnancy.
- Garlic is known to boost the immune system to reduce symptoms and duration of the common cold. It also contains antioxidants that may help prevent dementia.
- Pumpkins are rich in antioxidants that may reduce your risk of chronic diseases by destroying harmful bacteria. These antioxidants can also protect skin against sun damage and lower the risk of cancer and eye disease.
- Yellow Squash is low in calories and contains no cholesterol, fat and sodium. Tip: do not peel the skin – that’s where most of the nutrients are stored.
- Zucchini helps keep thyroid hormone levels stable and, thanks to its vitamin C, it can strengthen vision. It’s also versatile; it can be grilled, roasted, braised, pickled, baked, or eaten raw.
For details about the health benefits of additional foods, meal planning tips and active lifestyle recommendations, visit the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
About HSHS Sacred Heart Hospital
HSHS Sacred Heart Hospital is sponsored by Hospital Sisters Ministries, the Hospital Sisters of St. Francis is the Founding Institute, and it is an affiliate of Hospital Sisters Health System. Since 1889, it has been meeting patient needs in western Wisconsin with the latest medical innovations and technology, together with a Franciscan whole-person healing tradition.
About HSHS St. Joseph’s Hospital
HSHS St. Joseph’s Hospital is sponsored by Hospital Sisters Ministries, the Hospital Sisters of St. Francis is the Founding Institute, and it is an affiliate of Hospital Sisters Health System. Since 1885, it has served the people of the Chippewa Falls area with health care that is high tech and high touch. Known locally for the quality of the care it provides patients, the hospital has been recognized nationally for its outstanding patient satisfaction levels.
About Hospital Sisters Health System
Hospital Sisters Health System’s (HSHS) mission is to reveal and embody Christ’s healing love for all people through our high-quality Franciscan health care ministry. HSHS provides state-of-the-art health care to our patients and is dedicated to serving all people, especially the most vulnerable, at each of our physician practices and 15 local hospitals in two states – Illinois (Breese, Decatur, Effingham, Greenville, Highland, Litchfield, O’Fallon, Shelbyville and Springfield) and Wisconsin (Chippewa Falls, Eau Claire, Oconto Falls, Sheboygan and two in Green Bay). HSHS is sponsored by Hospital Sisters Ministries, and Hospital Sisters of St. Francis is the founding institute. For more information about HSHS, visit www.hshs.org. For more information about Hospital Sisters of St. Francis, visit www.hospitalsisters.org