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MissouriFamilies eNewsletter

January 3, 2017



“I think in terms of the day's resolutions, not the years'.”

~Henry Moore



Jan. 1 calendar pageTen healthy habits for the new year

Adapted by Jessica Kovarik, RD, LD, former Extension Associate, from materials by Tammy Roberts, MS, RD, LD, Nutrition and Health Education Specialist, University of Missouri Extension

Weight loss is often included in the list of resolutions for the new year. Instead of going on another diet, choose to adopt healthy habits for a lifetime. To get started, here are ten suggestions based on the Dietary Guidelines for Americans.

  1. Engage in 30 minutes of physical activity every day. This helps to reduce the risk for chronic diseases...
  2. Make half your plate fruits and vegetables. Fruits and vegetables are high in nutrients and low in fat and calories...

For the complete list of healthy habits, see the full version of this article at

Coins falling into piggy bankYour financial new year

Adapted from MU Office for Financial Success Finance Tip of the Week blog post by Robert Weagley, Ph.D., Associate Professor and Chair Emeritus, Personal Financial Planning, University of Missouri Extension

Karen Blumenthal, a financial journalist for more than 25 years, wrote an article for The Wall Street Journal (Dec. 30, 2008) based on the holidays of the year and actions that people can take related to each holiday to fix their finances. It's a good way to remember to “check in” with your finances throughout the year...

Since most of us still aren’t making saving a priority, here are some things we can do throughout the year to keep our finances in order...

For the list of things you can do this year to check in on and improve your finances, see the full version of this article at

Variety of dried beansFriday, January 6 is National Bean Day

Beans are inexpensive, healthy and convenient

Tammy Roberts, MS, RD, LD, Nutrition and Health Education Specialist, Bates County, University of Missouri Extension

Beans are one of the best values around when it comes to the amount of nutrients for your dollar. One cup of cooked pinto beans provides 14 grams of fiber, 14 grams of protein, less than one gram of fat and around 230 calories. You get all of that at a cost of only 17 cents!

Many people don’t want to cook beans because it takes too long, but beans can be easily prepared in the microwave or slow cooker...

For tips on preparing and using nutritious beans, see the full version of this article at

Pregnant woman holding bowl of greensJanuary: Birth Defects Prevention Month

Christeena Haynes, MS, RD, LD, former Nutrition and Health Education Specialist, Dallas County, University of Missouri Extension

January is Birth Defects Prevention Month. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, 3,000 pregnancies in the U.S. are affected by neural tube defects every year.

Neural tube defects are birth defects that impact the brain and spinal cord. The most common are spina bifida and anencephaly... Not all birth defects can be prevented, but the risk of neural tube defects can be significantly reduced by consuming folic acid.

So what is folic acid? Folic acid is a B vitamin that the body needs to make new cells. Everyone needs it, but because folic acid plays such a crucial role in the prevention of neural tube defects, it is recommended that every woman who is able to become pregnant consume 400 micrograms (mcg) of folic acid each day...

To learn more about folic acid, including the best sources of it, see the full version of this article at

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