Have you ever wondered if our team members at The Dairy Alliance just talk the talk or if they walk the walk when it comes to enjoying dairy foods? Spoiler alert: We love dairy just as much as we say we do! As the summer brings children of all ages home, an abundance of fresh produce, outdoor celebrations, and vacations, here’s how our team members are cooling off with delicious dairy!
Youth Wellness Managers Donna Speed, Matti Coffey, and Will McWhirter all choose to cool down with dairy-based smoothies! As Donna’s granddaughter heads to the pool with cheese sticks and yogurt in tow, you can often find her sipping strawberry smoothies. Matti whips up Youth Wellness’ Go Green Smoothie recipe using milk, yogurt, and canned pears. Will savors the season using fresh watermelon, vanilla yogurt, and mint from his backyard.
Our staff knows that milk and dairy foods pack a nutritious punch. Protein is top of mind when choosing to include dairy in their family’s snacks, says Jana Miller from the Youth Wellness team. Sliced apples with peanut butter, Greek yogurt, and cheese with grapes are all hits in her household of grown and small children this summer. The same goes for Youth Wellness Manager Jill Gobin, who enjoys cheese sticks as a convenient source of protein, and Roseann Liberatore, who starts off most of her mornings with oatmeal topped with cottage cheese, nuts, and fresh fruit. Nea Gay, the Heath & Wellness Business Coordinator, also chooses to cover her family’s nutrient bases with dairy foods this summer by enjoying fruit salad, ice cream, and parfaits.
Bring on the Balance
As a mom and Registered Dietitian, offering dairy foods brings Callie Yakubisin, Assistant Director of Community Wellness, peace of mind. She says, “Kids love predictable foods which means packaged, mainly carbohydrate-based, simple foods are always a hit. I use dairy as an easy way to create some balance in my daughter’s meals and snacks since I know it provides a source of protein along with many other important nutrients that aren’t as prevalent in her other preferred foods.”
Cami Lewis, Youth Wellness Manager and Registered Dietitian, also cites balance as the main reason she feeds her two teenage boys dairy foods. “They are nutritious, and my kids like them. The other snacks they like are not as nutritious, so dairy foods help balance this out.”
Community Wellness Manager and Registered Dietitian Sarah Hester is always looking for a fun way to enjoy nourishing foods with her toddler. Popsicles made with milk, yogurt, and frozen fruit are a hit enjoyed on the front porch in the summer!
Many of our team members have fond memories of enjoying homemade ice cream during the summer and are carrying on the same tradition with their families today. As for Cindy Cooper, Assistant Director of Youth Wellness, her love of sipping ice-cold milk stems from childhood and she says that dairy milk is “real and real nutrient dense!” We’ll cheers to that!