Hannibal Regional Blog


Our blog offers content about healthcare, healthy living and the culture at Hannibal Regional.


These green beauties provide nearly 20 essential vitamins and nutrients and are a good source of fiber and folate, potassium, vitamin E and B vitamins.

Diets low in saturated fat, yet adequate in heart healthy fats such as those found in avocados, may reduce the risk of heart disease.

To eat, slice lengthwise, around the center seed and twist apart. Grab a spoon and scoop out, eat as is, spread on toast, chopped in salad, as guacamole or in other recipes such as the one below.

Avocado Tuna Salad

  • 2 tablespoons lime juice
  • 1 teaspoon red wine vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon red onion (minced)
  • 6 ounces can solid white tuna (in water)
  • 1 avocado (mashed)
  • 1 small plum tomato (chopped)


  1. In a bowl, whisk lime juice and red wine vinegar. Add the minced red onion and let sit for about 5 minutes while prepping other ingredients.
  2. Drain and discard the water from the can of tuna fish. Add to bowl with the red wine vinegar mixture.
  3. Add in the mashed avocado, chopped plum tomatoes. Fold ingredients together to blend. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Serve with whole grain crackers or over a green salad.

Blog post provided by:
Katied Foster, RDN, LD
Clinical Registered Dietitian

Adding Plant Based Protein to Your Diet

Protein, fat, and fiber are the three nutrients that stay in your stomach the longest, contributing to your satiety level. Protein at each meal helps to stabilize blood glucose levels and prevents the breakdown of lean body mass. Although protein recommendations are actually exceeded by the average person, consumption of plant based proteins are low. Plant based proteins such as nuts and legumes can be easily packed for a satisfying snack, and beans or grains can make for an inexpensive protein rich meal.  Below is a brief list of plant based protein foods to incorporate into your diet!

Food Amount Protein (g)
Almonds 1/2 C 15
Beans, cooked 1 C 16
Broccoli 1 C 3
Cashews 1/2 C 10
Chia seeds 2 Tbsp 6
Corn 1 C 4.5
Edamame, cooked 1 C 19
Hemp seeds 3 Tbsp 10
Hummus 1/4 C 5
Lentils, cooked 1C 18
Peanut butter, chunky 2 Tbsp 8
Peas 1 cup 8
Peanuts 1/2 C 19
Pistachios 1/2 C 12
Quinoa, cooked 1 C 14-18
Soybeans, cooked 1/2 C 11
Soynuts 1/2 C 22
Sunflower seeds 1/2 C 13
Tofu, firm 1/2 C 10
Walnuts 1/2 C 15
Wheat berries, cooked 1 C 12
Wheat germ or flaxseed 2 Tbsp 4

C=cup, fl oz=fluid ounce, oz=ounce, Tbsp=tablespoon

Blog post provided by:
Katie Foster, RDN, LD
Clinical Registered Dietitan

A New Meaning to Spring Cleaning

After a long winter, we often revive our home with a good spring cleaning. So why not do the same with our eating habits? We all know that fruits and vegetables are good for us, but yet most of us fall short of the recommended 5-9 servings per day. The simplicity of the produce section is something that no other section of the store has. Every item comes "as is", and is in its whole form. Eating a diet rich in fruits and vegetables may reduce risk for heart disease including heart attack and stroke, as well as protect against certain types of cancers. Fruits and vegetables are full of fiber, which helps maintain proper bowel function, reduce blood cholesterol levels and much more. They are packed with many essential nutrients, minerals, phytochemicals and antioxidants. The impact of fruit and vegetable consumption on our health is pretty remarkable.  Improving our eating habits can be hard, but if you currently don’t eat many fruits and vegetables, start by adding just 1 serving of a fruit and 1 serving of a vegetable to each day (1 orange with lunch, 1/2 cup sugar snap peas for a snack; ). Gradually increase the number of servings you eat per day to at least 2 fruits and 3 vegetables (or even up to 4 fruits and 5 vegetables). Spring clean your diet by choosing more from the produce section. 

What counts as a serving?

  • 1 medium piece of fruit= baseball size
  • ½ cup fresh, frozen or canned fruit
  • ¼ cup dried fruit
  • ½ cup 100% fruit juice
  • 1 cup leafy greens or raw veggies
  • ½ cup fresh, frozen or canned vegetables
  • ½ cup 100% vegetable juice

Blog post provided by:
Katie Foster, RDN, LD
Clinical Registered Dietitian

Powerful Phytonutrients

Phytonutrients can be defined as nutrients that have been scientifically proven to provide health benefits. "Phyto" in Greek means plants, and phytonutrients fall into their own category because they are not related to fats, carbohydrates, proteins, vitamins, or minerals.

Here are five steps to get more phytonutrients into your diet:

  1. Know your phytonutrient sources. Fruits, vegetables, whole grains, legumes, nuts, seeds, herbs, spices and teas. At the grocery store, explore different plant foods you have never tried and start to play with new foods and recipes.
  2. Aim for three to four servings of whole plant foods at every meal. A typical serving is about ½ cup cooked vegetables or 1 cup raw greens, a medium piece of fruit, or cup of berries or melon.
  3. Eat the rainbow. Green, yellow, orange, red, blue, purple and white. Consume at least two different colors every day, and vary these colors from day to day.
  4. Vary your choices. There are thousands of phytonutrients. Try to incorporate a new food every week to get the most diversity of phytonutrients.
  5. Get creative. Try cauliflower rice in place of white rice, squash noodles in place of pasta noodles, chickpea- or lentil-based pastas instead of wheat-based pastas. You can also find foods in a variety of colors, including multi-colored carrots or potatoes; red or golden beets; and purple, brown or black rice.

Tip- Smoothies are a great way to incorporate a variety of bright, colorful foods.

Blog post provided by:
Katie Foster,RDN,LD
Clinical Registered Dietitian

Fruit and Oat Muffins

Fruit and Oat Muffins 

This recipe is a staple in our home. We often bake something at least once a week, muffins being the most popular. It is a quick grab and go breakfast, or snack. These are super versatile as you can use whatever fruit you have on hand, or a combination of fruit. It is a great way to use produce that has seen better days. Change it up by adding dark chocolate chips, dried fruit and/or chopped nuts, seeds etc. These whole grain muffins are high in fiber and contain 2 tablespoons of fruit per muffin. They also freeze nicely!

2.5 cups any fruit puree 
½ cup butter, softened
½ cup yogurt
½ cup brown sugar
2 eggs
1 tsp salt
2 tsp vanilla
1 tablespoon cinnamon
1 tablespoon baking powder
3 cups old fashioned rolled oats
2 cups whole wheat flour

Preheat oven to 350F.
Puree fruit until smooth. Cream butter, yogurt and brown sugar using a handheld mixer or a stand mixer. Add eggs and pureed fruit. Mix well.
Stir in salt, vanilla, cinnamon, and baking powder. Mix well to combine. Add oats and flour. Continue mixing until just combined.
Prepare 24 muffin tins with liners sprayed with non-stick cooking spray. Fill muffin pans 3/4 full of batter and bake at 350 degrees for 20-25 minutes.
Remove from oven and allow to cool.

Blog post provided by:
Katie Foster, RDN, LD
Clinical Registered Dietitian