"Fruits & Veggies — More Matters" is a new national campaign to persuade people of all ages that eating more fruits and vegetables does matter.

"Fruits & Veggies — More Matters" is a new national campaign to persuade people of all ages that eating more fruits and vegetables does matter. The goal of the campaign is to encourage the intake of more fruits and vegetables at every occasion.
Last week we looked at five of the reasons why eating fruits and vegetables matter to your healthy well-being. These included a good source of fiber, fun to eat, and convenience. Other reasons include the wide variety of fruits and vegetables to choose from and the fact they come in lots of different colors and textures.
Here are 5 more of the Top 10 Reasons to eat more fruits and vegetables:
n 5. Low in calories. Fruits and vegetables are nutrient dense foods, meaning they provide significant nutrients with only a few calories. They are also low in fat or are fat-free. You truly get your money's worth when you purchase fruits and vegetables.
n 4. A quick and natural snack. Fruits and vegetables are one of the best snack choices. Just open a bag of baby carrots and enjoy. Wash an apple or peel a banana and eat it on the go. Wash and slice peppers, cucumbers, or zucchini for dipping in a fat free dressing. Just make sure these snack foods are available to your family and limit the high-sugar and high-salt snacking options.
n 3. Reduce your risk for disease. Eating plenty of fruits and vegetables may help to reduce your risk of developing diseases such as heart disease, high blood pressure, and some cancers.
n 2. Natural source of vitamins and minerals. Don't rely on a vitamin pill for good health. Remember that all of the nutrients you need can be found in food. Go for color : dark green leafy vegetables, bright orange and red, and deep purple fruits. The brighter and darker the pigment, the more vitamins and minerals found in those fruits and vegetables.
And the #1 reason to eat more fruits and vegetables” ... They taste great.
If your family is not already eating lots of fruits and vegetables and you struggle with getting them to try fruits and vegetables, begin adding them to their already favorite dishes. Improve the nutritional value and color of macaroni and cheese by adding frozen vegetables or broccoli. A classic spaghetti sauce gets a boost by adding shredded carrots, finely chopped mushrooms, diced tomatoes, and chopped peppers.
Fruit can also combine easily with main-course dishes. Make your salad a light meal by adding protein (such as chicken, beans, or nuts) and jazz it up with sliced apples, pears, or dried cranberries. Serve a fruit-based salsa with your meal, or add fresh fruit to your breakfast cereal or yogurt.
As summer approaches, make a special effort to include and enjoy these wonderful, colorful foods in your meal planning.

Walk Kansas 2008 Winding-Down
The 2008 K-State Research & Extension eight-week Walk Kansas program has had close to 700 Crawford County participants and over 20,000 participants state-wide. Walk Kansas team members are finishing their last week of this program which ends May 3rd.
They will be recognized for their accomplishments in this health and wellness challenge at a Walk Kansas celebration event on May 13th. Participants must pre-register for this Celebration event by calling the Crawford County Extension Office, 620-724-8233.
The evening will include a meal and a program, "Healthy Choices When Eating Out”.
Awards and prizes will be given by K-State Research & Extension, Crawford County Health Department Risk Reduction Grant, and the Health and Wellness committee of the Community Foundation of SE Kansas.
Walk Kansas participants tracked their miles and increased levels of physical activity during the eight weeks of this program with the team goal of walking 423 miles, the distance across Kansas. They also tracked their consumption of fruits and vegetables during the eight weeks. They received a weekly newsletter featuring health and wellness tips and a variety of ways to prepare and serve healthy fruits and vegetables.
For more information on the Walk Kansas program and more health and wellness tips, you may visit the Walk Kansas website at: www.walkkansas.org. Helpful nutrition tips and recipes can be found at this website under the "Healthy Eating for Life" link.