Fall Food Fest for Diabetes

Fall Food Fest for Diabetes

On October 10, the Community Health Center participated in Diabetes Awareness Day. The first ever Fall Food Fest for Diabetes took place in Waterbury and showcased some great food that was not only tasty but healthy!! (You can check out pictures on the ‘Community Health Center’ Facebook page) Hilda Cardona, Diabetes Educator here at CHC, sent the following email, edited for the blog, to all those involved in the successful event:

Dear Staff,

Thanks to all for your help and co-operation in making our first (and to be our annual) Diabetes Day event such a success.

A very special thank you to Michelle Kennedy (APRN), Michelle did an excellent job discussing medication, etc. and hope that she will consider being part of this event every year. Gail Wikler, RD—thank you so much for your great cooking demo and all important nutritional information —the best oatmeal I have ever tasted!!!!

I pulled out an apron that had a decal with First Annual Cook-a-thon 2002.  The format was different as 5-6 providers would do a cooking demo and the community room in New Britain would become a Gala Event, the patients would decide what dish they liked the best and of course there was always a friendly competition among the cooks.(Dr. Daren Anderson usually won the prize for top chef!!!!

Needless to say —-It has been many years that we have been doing this event, we are now doing this program in Meriden as well as in New Britain and this year we added the Waterbury site.  It is a very labor intensive event but every year at the end of the day there is feeling of accomplishment and that we have make a difference in our patient’s lives.

Also, a special thank you to Juan Carlos Ramos, Psy D, who stopped by and added another component to our program, discussing the BH component.  I also am hoping that he will be part of this team next year and I will see if BH can be part of this event at the other sites.

Just need to add—-as usual I had a wonderful time , and my demo the Turkey chili was enjoyed by all,  it’s a joy working with such a dedicated staff—-and I was in my P.J’s at 7 pm!!!!



For those who missed the event, don’t worry! There will be two upcoming Fall Food Fests for Diabetes events happening in November.

November 8 – CHC Meriden (134 State Street Meriden, CT)

November 20 – CHC New Britain (85 Lafayette Street New Britain, CT)

Before I leave, I thought it would be nice to provide you readers with two of the recipes featured at our event on Oct. 10.

As we all know, ITS FOOTBALL SEASON and what’s better than watching the New England Patriots lose then watching the New England Patriots lose while eating a nice hot healthy bowl of Turkey Chili!!

Turkey Chili

Fresh jalapeno pepper and crushed red pepper flakes will get your attention when you sample this chili

Serves 4; 1.5 cups per serving

½ tablespoon canola oil

½ cup chopped red onion

2 medium garlic cloves, minced

1 teaspoon ground cumin

1 teaspoon dried oregano, crumbled

1 teaspoon chopped fresh jalapeno pepper, seeds and ribs discarded

¼ teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes

1 pound lean ground turkey breast, skin discarded before grinding 14.5-ounce can no-salt-added diced tomatoes, undrained 8-ounce can no-salt-added tomato sauce

1 cup low-fat, low-sodium chicken broth

15-ounce can no-salt-added kidney beans, rinsed and drained


  1. In a medium nonstick saucepan, heat the oil over medium heat. Cook the onion and garlic for about 2 minutes, or until tender-crisp
  2. Stir in the cumin, oregano, jalapeno, and red pepper flakes. Cook for 1 minute, stirring constantly
  3. Increase the heat to medium high. Stir in the turkey. Cook for 3 to 4 minutes, or until browned on the outside, stirring frequently.
  4. Stir in the remaining ingredients. Bring to a boil, still over medium-high heat. Reduce the heat and simmer, partially covered, for 30 minutes, or until the liquid has reduced by about one-third.


Nutrition Facts


Calories 271
Calories from Fat31
Total Fat3 g
Saturated Fat0.5 g
Polyunsaturated Fat1.1 g
Monounsaturated Fat1.4 g
Cholesterol65 mg
Sodium139 mg
Total Carbohydrate27 g
Dietary Fiber8 g
Sugars10 g
Protein 33 g



Hot chili peppers contain oils that can burn your skin, lips, and eyes. Wear rubber gloves or wash your hands thoroughly with warm, soapy water immediately after handling peppers.


Gail’s Fall Oatmeal

½ cup oats

1 cup light soy milk

¼ cup chopped pecans

1 teaspoon cinnamon

2 packets of Stevia in the Raw


  1. Measure 1 cup of light soy milk. Put in a medium saucepan. Heat on medium heat. Bring to a boil
  2. Add oats to boiling soy milk. Stir oats. Cook for about 5 minutes
  3. Add chopped nuts and cinnamon
  4. Add 2 packets of Stevia in the Raw for sweetness

Nutrition Facts

Total Fat26 g
Saturated Fat2 g
Trans Fat0 g
Sodium65 mg
Total Carbohydrate33.5 g
Dietary Fiber7.5 g
Sugars3.5 g
Protein11 g


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