Friday, August 16, 2019


The Manchester School District is required by Federal Law to have a wellness policy. The policy supports family and community efforts to encourage student achievement and health since an active, well-nourished child is more successful in the classroom and performs better on tests.

How Can Parents Support the Policy

  • Following nutrition guidelines when providing food for classroom parties and school events 
  • Supporting non-food fundraisers or sell food items that meet the district nutrition guidelines
  • Providing healthy choices when packing snacks and bag lunches
If you are a parent and are interested in participating on the district's school wellness council, please email Sue Sheehy at

For more information on our wellness policy or school wellness council, visit our district website at under Departments and Food and Nutrition Services.

Thursday, August 15, 2019


Corn is a whole grain and popcorn can be a healthy snack when prepared correctly. Three cups of plain popped popcorn is only about 80 calories. Kernels can also be purchased in yellow, white and Non- GMO. Here are some ways to dress up your popcorn and avoid the artificial colors and flavorings, unhealthy fats and sodium of the microwave popcorn.

First, start with the basics…
½ cup popcorn kernels
1½ tablespoons of vegetable oil (sunflower, safflower, or canola)

1.       Turn the stove onto medium heat.
2.       Place the oil in a medium sized pan.
3.       Add the kernels to the oil and cover to allow the kernels to pop.
4.       Remove the pan from the heat when the popping noise is 2-3 seconds apart.

Next… Dress it up!

Add a small amount of parmesan cheese, garlic powder, chili powder and cumin, or any other savory spices

Add cinnamon, nutmeg, allspice, or any other warming spices


Calories: 110, Total Fat: 6g, Saturated Fat: 4.5g, Sodium: 1mg, Carbohydrates: 13g, Sugar: 0g, Dietary Fiber: 2.5g, Protein: 2g

Sunday, July 14, 2019


The Federal Food, Drug and Cosmetic Act defines a supplement as a vitamin, mineral, herb or other botanical, amino acid, or dietary substance for use by man to supplement the diet by increasing the dietary intake, concentrate, metabolite, constituent extract, or combination of preceding substances. With the astronomical variety of supplements being marketed it comes as a surprise to many that these products are not fully regulated by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA). Supplements fall under the Dietary Supplement Health and Education Act (DHSEA) of 1994 that prohibits manufacturers and distributors from marketing false or unsafe products. Prior to distribution, companies selling supplements must establish a safety plan and proper labeling to meet the DHSEA regulations. Although meeting these regulations are required, the FDA does not test these supplements to verify that what is on the ingredient list is actually being sold.

While the FDA does not regulate such products, there are independent organizations that test these products to determine if the ingredients on the label are in fact what the supplement contains without the addition of ingredients not listed. Unfortunately, these independent companies do not test to see if the supplement has a particular health effect or if it is safe. Organizations such as Consumer Labs, NSF Internationals and US Pharmacopeia all have their own seal of approval that can be found on the front of the supplement bottle indicating that the specific supplement has been tested.

Under federal law dietary supplements cannot be promoted for the treatment of disease because they are not proven to be safe and effective. Label claims such as “address nutrient deficiency,” “supports health,” “shrinks tumors,” “this product does it all” and scientific words being used like “scientific breakthrough” and “secret Ingredient” must be followed by this disclaimer “This supplement has not been evaluated by the FDA. This product is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any disease”. These label claims can be tip-offs of a company looking to take advantage of the limited knowledge of the general public and that supplements are simply not fully regulated by the FDA.

Before purchasing a supplement, it is important to speak with a doctor, registered dietitian or a pharmacist to determine a person’s nutrition needs. Factors to consider may include age, diet, current medical conditions or medical conditions a person may be at risk for such as osteoporosis, heart disease, kidney disease, cancer, pregnancy and more. It is also important to do your homework before purchasing any type of over the counter supplement. Questions a person should ask include: What does this supplement do? What are the risks and the benefits? How much do I take? How long do I take it? When do I take it?

When researching supplements, it is important to consider the risks. Speaking with a doctor, registered dietitian or pharmacist before taking a supplement will be helpful in determining which are safe for specific medical conditions. Many supplements can have interactions with current medications a person may be taking. Examples include vitamin C and E with cancer treatments; antidepressants and birth control with St. John’s Wort; vitamin K with Coumadin; ginseng with Heparin; anticoagulants and NSAIDS; gingko biloba with high blood pressure medications. Health conditions to be aware of when taking supplements include surgery, pregnancy, breastfeeding, heart disease, high blood pressure, and gastrointestinal issues. For example, during pregnancy a prenatal vitamin is recommended as consuming the recommended dosage of specific vitamins like folate can prevent long term birth defects such as spina bifida.

If a potential problem is suspected with a supplement it can be reported to the Federal Trade Commission, State Attorney’s General Office, State Department of Health, or your Local Consumer Protection Agency. If an illness is suspected to be a result from taking a supplement, report to your doctor immediately and a compliant can be filed with the FDA online.

Office of Food Additive Safety, Guidance for industry: Distinguishing liquid dietary supplements from beverages. U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. January 2014. Accessed March 26th, 2019.

Dietary Supplement Products and Ingredients, FDA website. Accessed March 26, 2019

Dietary Supplements. FDA Website. Accessed March 26, 2019
Dietary Supplements, What you need to know. National Institutes of Health website. Accessed March 26, 2019

FDA 101: Dietary Supplements. FDA website. Accessed March 26, 2019

Medication Interactions: Food, Supplements and Other Drugs. American Heart Association Website. Accessed March 26, 2019

Medication and Supplements that can raise your blood pressure. Mayo Clinic Website. Accessed March 26, 2019

15 Supplement Ingredients to Always Avoid. Consumer Reports Website. Accessed March 26, 2019

Mixed Medications and Dietary Supplements Can Endanger Your Health. FDA website. Accessed March 26, 2019

Guidance for Industry. Distinguishing Liquid Dietary Supplements from Beverages. FDA website. . Accessed March 26, 2019.


Tis the season.....for berries, especially blueberries!!! With flavors that range from mildly sweet to tart and tangy, blueberries are nutritional stars bursting with nutrition and flavor . This is the time to eat blueberries because they are at their best. The blueberry season can last from May through October. In New Hampshire, July is prime picking time.

Blueberries have been called a “super” food for so many reasons. Want to retain your memory? Lower your risk factors for some cancers? How about a great natural source of antioxidants for optimum health? Research in Canada and the USA supports evidence that blueberries are powerful disease fighters. Blueberries have been ranked number one in antioxidant activity over 40 other tested fruits and vegetables. In fact, eating a cup of blueberries a day reduces risk factors for cardiovascular disease -- according to a new study. ... New findings published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition show that eating 150g (about 1 cup) of blueberries daily reduces the risk of cardiovascular disease by up to 15 percent

We now know that blueberries are one of the best sources of antioxidants, substances that can slow the aging process and reduce cell damage that can lead to cancer, according to the American Institute for Cancer Research. Blueberries are a particularly rich source of antioxidants called anthocyanins (also contained in apples, grapes, blackberries, radishes, and red cabbage). Several studies suggest anthocyanins discourage blood clots from forming, warding off heart attacks. They also appear to improve night vision and to slow macular degeneration by strengthening tiny blood vessels in the back of the eye. Blueberries have also been associated with improving short term memory loss, promoting urinary tract health, improved metabolism of glucose (type of sugar), and reducing the risk of some types of cancers.

For just 40 calories in a ½-cup serving, blueberries offer a great lineup of nutrients like potassium and iron, as well as being a an excellent source of Vitamin C. And let’s not forget that blueberries also provide dietary fiber, two grams in each ½-cup serving which equals the amount of fiber in a slice of whole wheat bread so make sure to take the whole family blueberry picking this summer.


1 - 6 ounce container non-fat blueberry yogurt
(Try Greek for a thicker consistency!)
1/2 cup apple juice
1/3 cup fresh or frozen blueberries
1/3 cup frozen sliced peaches
5-6 ice cubes


1. Place yogurt, apple juice, blueberries and peaches in blender.
2. Add ice cubes.
3. Blend ingredients until smooth.
4. Serve immediately

Makes 2 servings.

Courtesy of Oregon Blueberry Commission , US Highbush Blueberry Council, American Cancer Institute for Research, and USDA

Thursday, June 13, 2019


1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour                     ¾-1 cup oat flour or quick oats
1 3/4 teaspoons baking powder               2 tablespoons butter, softened
¼ cup nonfat plain Greek yogurt             ¼- ½  cup honey
2 large eggs                                             2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1/2 cup nonfat milk                                  1 tablespoon lemon zest
2 cups blueberries                                           or 1 teaspoon lemon extract                                           

2 tablespoons sugar
3 tablespoons all-purpose flour
1 tablespoon oat flour or quick oats
2 tablespoons butter, melted
Pecans or walnuts (optional)
Preheat oven to 350º. Spray a 9-inch spring form pan or 8 X 8 inch square pan with non-stick cooking spray with flour.

Prepare crumb topping and set  aside. CRUMB TOPPING: In a small bowl, combine sugar, flour, oat flour and butter. Mix until mixture is crumbly.

In a small bowl, whisk together flour, oat flour (if you use more honey then use 1 cup oats instead of ¾ cup) and baking powder and set aside. In a large bowl, beat butter, eggs, honey, vanilla and milk. Mix in lemon zest or extract. Add flour mixture and mix just until combine. Stir in blueberries.
Spread batter evenly into prepared pan. Sprinkle with crumb topping.

Bake at 350º for 45 minutes or conventional bake for 25 minutes or until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean. Cool 10 minutes, then run a knife around the edge and remove ring. Cool completely before serving. (Unless you would rather eat it hot even though the cake doesn’t cut as well.)

Nutrition for 12 servings: Calories: 200, Total Fat: 5g, Saturated Fat: 2.8g, Sodium: 60mg, Carb: 30g, Fiber: 2g, Sugars: 12g (includes fruit and milk sugar), Protein: 10g, Potassium: 246mg