Orange Creamsicle Smoothie Recipe

Category: Workplace Wellness

Orange Creamsicle Smoothie Recipe

Posted On: May 2, 2021 | Categorized as: Workplace Wellness

Orange Creamsicle Smoothie Recipe Try this super simple and quick smoothie recipe when you are in a hurry or need a Vitamin C boost!  Vitamin C is proven to improve your immunity, boost mood, and decrease your risk of chronic conditions such as heart disease. Ingredients: 1 cup Frozen Banana Slices 1 tsp Vanilla Extract 1 cup 100% Orange Juice ½ cup of ice Directions: Place frozen bananas, vanilla extract, and orange juice into a blender and blend until smooth. Add a handful of ice and any additional add-ins desired (protein powder, chia seeds, flax seeds, etc). Blend one more time and then serve immediately.


Veggie Lasagna Stuffed Portobello Mushrooms

Posted On: April 21, 2021 | Categorized as: Workplace Wellness

Veggie Lasagna Stuffed Portobello Mushrooms Looking for a healthier version of the classic “Lasagna”?  Try these "Veggie Lasagna Stuffed Portobello Mushrooms" by Skinnytaste! This can be prepared for lunch or dinner and served with a garden or Caesar salad.  With only 13 grams carbohydrates and 20 grams of protein per mushroom cap, this is a great low-carb meal recommended by Nurse Advocate, Erica Polaneczky! Ingredients: 1teaspoon olive oil 2loose cups baby spinach, chopped 3cloves chopped garlic 1/3cup chopped onion 1/3cup chopped red bell pepper kosher salt 3/4cup part skim ricotta 1/2cup grated parmesan cheese 1large egg 4large basil leaves, chopped 4large portobella mushroom caps 1/2cup marinara sauce 1/2cup part skim shredded mozzarella Directions: Preheat the oven to 400F. Spray a baking sheet with oil. Gently remove the stems, scoop out the gills and spray the tops of the mushrooms with oil, season with 1/8 tsp salt and fresh pepper. Heat a large nonstick sauté pan over medium heat, add oil,…


Gourmet Grilled Cheese Recipe

Posted On: April 14, 2021 | Categorized as: Workplace Wellness

Gourmet Grilled Cheese Recipe Ingredients ½ tsp olive oil 1 garlic clove, thinly sliced 1 cup baby spinach leaves 1 cup baby arugula leaves 2 slices of turkey bacon 2 Italian bread slices ¼ cup part-skim mozzarella cheese, shredded  ¼ cup fontina cheese Directions Heat a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add oil; swirl to coat. Add garlic to pan; sauté 1 minute. Add spinach and arugula; stir until wilted. Remove spinach mixture from pan. Return pan to medium-high heat. Add bacon; cook until crisp. Remove bacon. Top bread slice evenly with cheeses, bacon pieces, spinach mixture, and the remaining bread slice. Add sandwich to drippings in pan; weigh down with a plate. Cook 2 minutes on each side


Grilled Sesame Chicken

Posted On: March 24, 2021 | Categorized as: Workplace Wellness

Grilled Sesame Chicken Did you know that certain foods high in tryptophan and healthy carbohydrates can help induce sleep? For a good night’s sleep, try to eat an early evening meal and a bedtime snack that contains at least 300 mg of tryptophan.  Two cutlets from this recipe provide 700 mg tryptophan! Ingredients 6 thin boneless skinless chicken cutlets, 3 oz each 2tbsp lemon juice 2tbsp toasted sesame seeds 2cloves garlic, minced 2tsp fresh ginger, peeled and minced 2green onions, minced 1/4cup low sodium soy sauce, for gluten free, use tamari 1/4cup teriyaki sauce 1tsp honey 2tsp sesame oil Directions Combine all marinade ingredients in a small bowl. Pour the mixture over the chicken, turn the pieces to coat evenly, cover and place in refrigerator a minimum of three hours, but preferably overnight. Preheat grill to high. Grill chicken top side down first until well browned charred, about 5 minutes, turn and cook on the second side about 3 more minutes. Transfer…


Seared Salmon with Spicy Red Pepper Aioli

Posted On: March 9, 2021 | Categorized as: Workplace Wellness

Seared Salmon with Spicy Red Pepper Aioli Ingredients 2 cloves garlic, minced 1 Tablespoon chipotle pepper in adobe sauce, chopped 1 Tablespoon freshly squeezed lime juice ¼ cup jarred roasted red peppers, chopped 1 cup mayonnaise Kosher salt & fresh black pepper 4 (6-ounce) boneless, skinless, center-cut salmon steaks Olive oil 1 lime, quartered for serving Directions Preheat oven to 400 degrees Aioli: Combine garlic and chipotle peppers to make a course paste. Place paste in food processor along with lime juice, roasted red peppers, and puree. Add the mayo, ¼ teaspoon salt & pepper, process until smooth. Salmon: Heat dry cast-iron skillet over high heat for 5 minutes. Place salmon fillets on a board, pat dry with paper towels, and rub all over with olive oil. With the fillets rounded side up, sprinkle them with 1 ½ teaspoons salt and ¾ teaspoon black pepper.   Place salmon in skillet…


Incorporating Wellness into Your Employee Benefits Strategy

Posted On: March 4, 2021 | Categorized as: Employee Benefits, Workplace Wellness

Incorporating Wellness into Your Employee Benefits Strategy Wellness is a strategy that continues to gain in popularity as employers are looking for ways to help their employees become healthier, more engaged, and happier at work. Wellness is typically broken into three categories. The first category is educational wellness. With an educational program, employers are providing educational guidance on how to be healthier through newsletters, seminars, and webinars, and maybe even a health fair onsite at the employer's office. The second type of wellness program is a participatory wellness program. Under this arrangement, the employer would provide a reward for participation by employees in an event such as a walking challenge, attending a health fair, or maybe a weight loss challenge. The third type of wellness is a results-based or outcomes-based plan design. Under this plan, the employer would provide a reward to employees that satisfy a standard set in the…


Avocado Pesto Dip Recipe

Posted On: February 23, 2021 | Categorized as: Workplace Wellness

Avocado Pesto Dip Recipe Did you know that avocado is a heart-healthy fat?  Healthy fats can help lower your LDL or “bad cholesterol”.  Avocados also contain a lot of fiber, vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants that are beneficial to your heart health.  Try this quick and easy dip for a heart-healthy appetizer during National Heart Month. Ingredients 2 medium ripe avocados, peeled, pitted, and cut into pieces 1 cup fresh basil leaves 1/4 cup unsalted pine nuts 3 tablespoons olive oil (extra virgin preferred) 1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice 3 medium garlic cloves 1/4 teaspoon salt 1/4 teaspoon cracked black pepper Directions In a food processor or blender, process all the ingredients for about 3 minutes, or until the mixture is fluffy and creamy. Serve with fresh vegetables or pita chips.


Innovative Launches COVID-19 Employee Monitoring and Advocacy Solution

Posted On: February 18, 2021 | Categorized as: Workplace Wellness

Innovative Launches COVID-19 Employee Monitoring and Advocacy Solution Innovative Benefit Planning, LLC is here to help your organization bring your employees back to the workplace safely and securely. In order to so, we are proud to launch our COVID-19 Employee Health Tracker, which will provide employers a COVID-19 monitoring and advocacy solution. By using our Employee Health Tracker, employees will get alerted each morning to begin their screening. This process only takes a matter of minutes to complete, and then compliance reporting will be provided, as well as return to work guidance for the employee. This application focuses on evaluating symptoms and helping individuals identify if it is safe to go to work that day based on their responses. Following implementation, your organization will have an affordable solution that will help remain complaint, reduce HR burden, be HIPAA complaint, protect your team and workplace, and provide employees with a dedicated…


Chewy Chocolate Chip Granola Bar Recipe

Posted On: January 21, 2021 | Categorized as: Workplace Wellness

Chewy Chocolate Chip Granola Bars *176 caloriess each Ingredients ¼ cup butter ¼ cup honey 1/3 cup packed brown sugar 2 cups quick-cooking oats 1 cup crispy rice cereal ½ tsp vanilla extract 2 tbsp mini chocolate chips Directions In a bowl, stir oats and rice cereal together. Set aside. In a small pot, melt butter, honey and brown sugar together over medium heat until it bubbles. Reduce the heat and cook 2 minutes or until the sugar dissolves (should take 1-2 minutes). Pour in vanilla and stir. Pour over dry ingredients and mix well to moisten all ingredients. Pour into lightly greased small jelly roll pan {12x8x1} and press out to be about 3/4 inches in thickness.  Sprinkle with mini chocolate chips and press down lightly. Cool on a countertop to room temperature for two hours or until the chocolate chips are set before cutting into bars. Wrap in…


EEOC Releases Proposed Wellness Rules under ADA and GINA

Posted On: January 20, 2021 | Categorized as: Compliance, Workplace Wellness

EEOC Releases Proposed Wellness Rules Under ADA and GINA The EEOC recently released proposed language revising the wellness incentive rules under the ADA and GINA. This proposed language is a revision to the rules released in 2016. Below is a summary of the proposed changes and how they may impact wellness programs. Removing the ADA Notice Requirement Currently, employers are required to provide a notice before collecting employee health information. This notice advises employees how their collected health information will be used and disclosed. According to the proposed rules, providing this notice will no longer be necessary. The EEOC states that employers should have these specific policies and procedures in place, however, there is not going to be a guideline that requires them to. Removing the Reasonably Designed Requirement Previously, the requirement stated that any health information collection activity completed by an employee wellness program must be reasonably designed to…


Spinach, Chicken, and Wild Rice Soup

Posted On: January 6, 2021 | Categorized as: Workplace Wellness

Spinach, Chicken, and Wild Rice Soup Ingredients 3 cups water 14 oz can reduced-sodium chicken broth 10.75 oz can reduced-fat and reduced-sodium condensed cream of chicken soup 2/3 cup uncooked wild rice ½ tsp thyme ¼ tsp black pepper 3 cups cooked and chopped chicken or turkey 2 cups shredded fresh spinach Directions In a slow cooker, combine water, brother, cream of chicken soup, uncooked wild rice, thyme, and pepper Cover and cook on low for 7 to 8 hours or on high for 3 ½  to 4 hours To serve, stir in cooked chicken or turkey and spinach


Cranberry Oatmeal Bars Recipe

Posted On: December 15, 2020 | Categorized as: Workplace Wellness

Cranberry Oatmeal Bars Recipe Ingredients: 1 ½ cups quick cooking rolled oats 1 cup all-purpose flour ⅔ cup brown sugar ¼ cup whole wheat flour or all-purpose flour ¼ cup flaxseed meal ½ tsp baking soda ½ cup fat free milk 2 egg whites, lightly beaten 1 tsp vanilla extract ¼ cup dried cranberries 3 tbsp butter ¼ cup chopped pecans or almonds Directions: Preheat oven to 350 degrees. In a bowl, stir together oats, all-purpose flour, brown sugar, whole wheat flour and flaxseed. Set aside ½ cup for topping. Stir baking soda into the remaining oat mixture. In another bowl, whisk together milk, oil, egg whites, and vanilla. Add to the oat mixture and stir until combined. Stir in cranberries. Pat mixture into a foil-lined 9x9x2 inch baking pan. Using a pastry blender, cut butter into reserved topping and then stir in pecans. Sprinkle over mixture in pan. Bake…


Healthy for the Holidays

Posted On: December 15, 2020 | Categorized as: Workplace Wellness

Healthy for the Holidays Tis' the Season for Temptations While the holidays are an exciting and eventful time of year, holiday festivities can often revolve around eating and drinking. Traditions involve baking cookies, high calorie drink making, and eating plentiful holiday meals.  We tend to get so busy around this time, we may put our healthy eating habits and exercise on the back burner.  It’s important to remember that indulging occasionally is normal, but to avoid doing so every day during the holiday season. Make the effort to create a balance and shift the focus off the food and to more of the conversations and interactions with family and friends. Try some of these helpful tips this holiday season: Stay active. Keep moving each day to balance out the extra calories which may be consumed. Remember balance and portion control. Try using a smaller plate so you don’t overfill. Wait…


End of Year Wellness Initiatives to Drive Employee Well-Being

Posted On: November 24, 2020 | Categorized as: Workplace Wellness

End of Year Wellness Initiatives to Drive Employee Well-Being As we near the end of the year, don’t let your wellness program slip through the cracks. With the holidays approaching, flu and germ season here, and 2021 planning in full effect, now is the perfect time to evaluate your organization’s end of year wellness initiatives in order to keep your team healthy and off on the right foot in 2021. Consider these 8 tips as you approach the end of year: Educate employees on how to reduce the spread of illness and encourage them to receive a flu shot (provide education and coverage information when possible) With the number of COVID-19 cases rising across the country, we must try to prevent the spread of the flu.  Not only do you want your team to be healthy, but this also ensures that proper resources needed to treat critical COVID-19 patients will…


The CDC Redefines “Close Contact”

Posted On: November 23, 2020 | Categorized as: Workplace Wellness

The CDC Redefines “Close Contact” As the number of reported cases of COVID-19 continues to rise, employers are increasingly confronted with questions and obligations regarding their workforce.  With that being said, employers should be aware that as of October 21st, the CDC revised the definition of “close contact” to include the following: Someone who was within 6 feet of an infected person for a cumulative total of 15 minutes or more over 24 hours* starting from 2 days before illness onset (or, for asymptomatic patients, 2 days prior to testing specimen collection) until the time the patient is isolated. * Individual exposures added together over 24 hours (e.g., three 5-minute exposures for a total of 15 minutes). Data are limited, making it difficult to precisely define “close contact;” however, 15 cumulative minutes of exposure at a distance of 6 feet or less can be used as an operational definition for contact…


Healthy Thanksgiving Side Swaps

Posted On: November 18, 2020 | Categorized as: Workplace Wellness

Healthy Thanksgiving Side Swaps Who doesn’t love the tasty sides that come with a traditional Thanksgiving meal? Why not try something a little healthier this year along with your staples! Tangy Glazed Brussel Sprouts Ingredients: 3 tbsp olive oil ¼ tsp ground cardamom ⅛ tsp crushed red pepper 1 lb trimmed and halved Brussels sprouts ¼ cup pomegranate juice 3 tbsp white balsamic vinegar Optional: 1 oz crumbled feta cheese and 3 tbsp chopped toasted pecans Directions: Heat olive oil, ground cardamom, and crushed red pepper in a skillet over medium-high heat. Add Brussels sprouts and cook until browned, about 7 minutes. Add pomegranate juice and white balsamic vinegar. Cook until sauce is syrupy, another 5 to 6 mins. Top evenly with feta cheese and toasted pecans. Serves 4 (serving size is ¾ cup) Skillet Green Bean Casserole Ingredients: 1 lb green beans 2 slices whole-wheat bread ¼ cup chopped…


Better Sleep for Better Health

Posted On: November 12, 2020 | Categorized as: Workplace Wellness

woman sleeping peacefully on white bed

Better Sleep for Better Health As we approach the holiday season, it is important to remember to take some time to care for yourself. The holidays can be extremely busy, stressful, and even draining at times. Don’t forget to make yourself a priority. Self care is about taking time for yourself, and one way to ensure you are dedicating some time to yourself is to work on improving your sleep and sleep habits. Research shows that as many as 60% of Americans suffer from poor quality sleep. It is recommended that adults get 7-9 hours of sleep per night because sleep plays a vital role in promoting physical health, longevity, and emotional well-being. Take some time to read these tips provided by Innovative Benefit Planning's Nurse Advocate in order to improve your sleep during these stressful times. Stick to a sleep schedule. Set aside a minimum of 7 hours of…


Vegetable Chili Recipe

Posted On: October 14, 2020 | Categorized as: Workplace Wellness

Vegetable Chili Recipe As the weather starts to turn, there’s nothing more comforting than a hot bowl of chili.  This recipe is loaded with lots of vegetables but it’s tasty too! You can certainly add to it if you’d like such as rice, quinoa, barley, small pasta or even shredded chicken.  You can swap in your favorite vegetables and beans as well. INGREDIENTS ¼  cup olive oil 2 zucchini, cut into ½-inch dice 2 onions, cut into ½-inch dice 4 cloves garlic, finely chopped 2 large red bell peppers, cored and cut into ¼-inch dice 1 can (35 ounces) Italian plum tomatoes, with their juice 1½ pounds ripe plum tomatoes, cut into 1 inch dice 2 tablespoons good-quality chili powder 1 tablespoon ground cumin 1 tablespoon dried basil 1 tablespoon dried oregano 2 teaspoons freshly ground black pepper 1 teaspoon salt 1 teaspoon fennel seeds ½ cup Chopped fresh Italian (flat-leaf) parsley 1 cup canned dark red kidney beans, drained 1 cup canned chick-peas (garbanzos), drained ½ cup chopped fresh dill 2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice 1 cup sour cream 2 cups grated Monterey Jack cheese 4 scallions (green onions), white bulb and 3 inches green, sliced…


How Employers Can Show Support on World Mental Health Awareness Day

Posted On: October 7, 2020 | Categorized as: Workplace Wellness

How Employers Can Show Support on World Mental Health Awareness Day World Mental Health Day is recognized annually to promote education for global mental health, as well as create awareness and advocacy against social stigma.   This yearly observance has occurred since 1992 and carries with it a yearly theme.  It falls on October 10th, and the goal of this year’s theme is increased investment in mental health, with a focus on expanding the availability of mental health resources for all. Statistically, 1 in 5 adults in the U.S. have a mental health disorder, while 1 in 22 adults live with a serious mental illness such as bipolar, depression, or schizophrenia. This COVID-19 pandemic has only led to increased mental health problems due to isolation, fear, and social distancing.  With that being said, it is imperative that we support the World Federation for Mental Heath’s view that, “ there is no…


Zucchini Bread Recipe

Posted On: September 22, 2020 | Categorized as: Workplace Wellness

Zucchini Bread Recipe Ingredients: 1 ½ cup shredded zucchini ½ cup honey 2 eggs ⅓ cup unsweetened almond milk 2 tsp vanilla extract 2 cups whole wheat flour 1 tsp baking soda ½ tsp salt 1 ½ tsp ground cinnamon ¼ tsp nutmeg ⅓ cup coconut oil, melted Optional: ½ cup walnuts or ½ cup chocolate chips Instructions: Preheat oven to 325°. Grease an 8x4 inch loaf pan. In a large bowl, combine zucchini, honey, eggs, almond milk, vanilla extract. In a separate bowl, whisk together flour, baking soda, nutmeg, salt, and cinnamon. Add the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients and mix. Next, add in coconut oil and mix. Fold in walnuts or chocolate chips if desired. Pour in to prepared loaf pan and bake for 50-60 minutes. Cool in pan for 10 minutes. Nutrition Information: Serving Size: 1 slice Calories 202 Total Fat 8.9g Saturated Fat 4.5g Protein…


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