Healthy Updates Newsletter

By: Loris Sofia Gregory, Healthy Kitchen Coach, Apple Valley, MN Most of us look forward to traditional comfort foods this special time of year, usually anticipating the pleasurable sights, smells and tastes of our family holidays. What dishes are on your “must serve” holiday list? Does everyone in your family agree or do you stress yourself out trying to satisfy everyone’s favorite food memories? What about potential rising numbers on the bathroom scale during the next few months?  Just thinking about holiday cooking and eating does not have to raise your blood pressure. Holiday feasts and treats can include superfoods, offering more nutrition per calorie without straining your waistline or wallet. Click to read more about the fresh, local and global rainbow of holiday superfoods and spices to consider. These fresh foods offer power-packed energy and strong immunity for happier healthier

The Annual Membership Meeting for Valley Natural Foods will be held at Royal Cliff, 2280 Cliff Road, Eagan. An optional 35th Anniversary Dinner will precede the meeting. The Facility is located on the SW corner of Cliff Road and Cedar Avenue. Optional dinner tickets are on sale at Valley Natural Foods customer service thru October 8. Gluten-free and vegetarian options are available. Tickets are $30 per person. A cash bar is available. Dinner begins at 6:00 p.m. Arrive early to register for the meeting. Call 952-891-1212, ext. 221 for more information. Menu: Dinner entrees will be catered by Brianno's. Cake (free to all guests) will be provided by Valley Natural Foods, and Down in the Valley Bakehouse. Buffet dinner includes: Chicken breast with white wine sauce (gluten-free option available with no breading), Vegetable Lasagna, Green Beans Almondine and Parsley Buttered Potatoes. Attendees will receive a swag

by Loris Sofia Gregory, Healthy Kitchen Coach, Apple Valley, MN There is absolutely no excuse for not eating your vegetables this month. Stand in the Valley Natural Foods produce department, breathe in the delightful aromas of FRESH & LOCAL and be dazzled by the bountiful healthy rainbow of pure energy. We all tend to overestimate the number of vegetable and fruit servings we eat in a day. At every meal, reserve half your plate (at least) for fresh produce. Have you or anyone you know ever been in danger of eating too many nutrient dense, calorie sparse vegetables? Go ahead and immerse yourself in bushel baskets of the earthy deep-hued beets; crisp yellow and greens summer squashes; and the dark green broccoli crowns, cucumbers, and dandelion greens, topped off with the succulent yellow, orange and red varieties of melons and you

By: Loris Sofia Gregory, Healthy Kitchen Coach, Apple Valley, MN The planting season is complete at Featherstone Farm, located in southeastern Minnesota bluff country near Rushford.  Featherstone farmer/owner Jack Hedin recently blogged that this is the earliest spring in his living memory that has produced such high quality and quantity of his first crops. With Featherstone delivering FRESH & LOCAL produce to Valley Natural Foods, expect red and green lettuces the first part of June, including butter, romaine and red oak leaf lettuces.  Discover more of what's local at the co-op

Front End Manager, Charlotte G., is a natural at making people smile through both her work and her hobby.  Charlotte’s passion of jewelry making started four years ago after she took a resin class at The Bead Monkey. Charlotte started by creating bottle cap pins.  Here’s how she does it.  The image gets sealed and glued into the bottle cap.  Then she allows 24 hours for the glue to dry.  Next she pours the resin and hopes for zero air bubbles.  She also creates beautiful pendants made from a 1 x 2 piece of glass. Charlotte uses all recycled paper to craft these beautiful pieces that typically consist of nice, vibrant colors and images or sayings.  Friends provide cards, magazine and catalogs and she shops for things that catch her eye at scrapbook stores and local art fairs.  In fact, “I have

Wash with a clean conscience!  Some may say it's magical.  Dr. Bronner's soaps are made with hemp and organic oils and are now certified fair trade. Valley Natural Foods carries ten varieties of great scents that can be used for multiple purposes.  Stop in our store and grab a recipe card for basic liquid laundry soap. Here's a tip from Dr. Bronner on using their Shikakai soaps: "Wet hair and scalp very thoroughly, squirt some soap into hands and work into a lather.  Wash hair, then rinse well.  Afterwards use our new citrus hair rinse and leave-in conditioners as directed." Our staff pick of the week is the Dr. Bronner's line of liquid and bar soaps just in time for Hemp History Week Check out Dr. Bronner's on Facebook! Hemp History Week is on Facebook!

Veggie and herb plants from Green Earth Growers have been selling briskly here at the co-op! If you have not had a chance to shop for your garden veggie plants yet, there's still some interesting varieties available at highly competitive prices! Fatali Pepper - If you missed out on the legendary ghost pepper plant (wow, we quickly ran out of those) then give the Fatali a try. Though not quite as hot as the ghost, they still bite hard with a rich citrus taste! Grown and very popular in Africa, the Fatali is fantastic for making amazing hot sauce. The fruits resemble ghost peppers but ripen to a bright yellow instead of orange and are just a bit smaller. Heirloom Green Grape Cherry Tomato - Don't be afraid of the name of these prolific heirloom tomatoes! They're ripe when they have chartruse-yellow

If you like celebrating Cinco de Mayo, check out what your friendly neighborhood co-op has to offer to make the 5th of May a yummy day! Our produce department makes Garden Fresh Salsa! Being one of our best sellers, this salsa is made almost daily in order to keep up with demand! Pairs nicely with locally grown and produced Whole Grain Milling Tortilla Chips. Do you like guacamole? Pick up some organic avocados, and mash the flesh with a few spoonfuls of our salsa for the best tasting guacamole ever! Or purchase a delicious container of Yucatan Organic Guacamole for convenience! Visit our meat department for some awesome house-made Chorizo, made with Hidden Stream Farm pork and our own Chorizo spice recipe. Ask our staff for some great ideas on how to prepare it in the oven or on the grill! In the deli

Throughout the month of April, Valley Natural Foods encourages the community to unite for one of its  own -- Wellness Manager, Naomi Lundberg. As a benefit for Naomi, who is currently battling breast cancer, customers can purchase $5.00 donation bags of wellness products (each bag is valued at $40-$50) that will be given to our local  food shelf, 360 Communities.  100% of the proceeds raised from the purchase of the bags will benefit Naomi in her fight against breast cancer. Also, every time you purchase a wellness bag, you can register to win one of three gift baskets full of wellness products valued at $70-$100 each. A cashier will hand you a drawing slip at the point of purchase. This fundraiser would not be possible without the overwhelming support from our wellness vendors who donated 100% of the  product used to make the