Colorectal Cancer Awareness Month

March is Colorectal Cancer Awareness Month. Did you know that colorectal cancer is considered to be “Preventable, Treatable, Beatable“? And that a healthy diet rich in fruits and vegetables, active lifestyle, and maintaining a healthy weight can help to prevent colorectal cancer? You can further reduce your colorectal cancer risk by following the screening recommendations of your doctor. Having a colonoscopy when your doctor recommends it, whether or not you have any symptoms, can actually catch and remove precancerous polyps when they are very small, thus helping to prevent this disease!

This year, Healthy Waltham is working with Mount Auburn Hospital, Joseph M Smith Community Health Center and the MA Comprehensive Cancer Prevention and Control Program to increase awareness of the fact that cancer, like other chronic diseases, is increasingly linked to lifestyle factors. Cancer is now the leading cause of death in Massachusetts, surpassing heart disease and stroke. Every year over 36,000 Massachusetts residents are diagnosed with cancer and nearly 13,000 die from cancer.

One in three cancers may be attributed to the combined effect of insufficient physical activity and elevated weight status, and one in five are due to elevated weight status only. For more resources on cancer prevention, and on colorectal cancer prevention and screening in particular, please see our Cancer Resources Page here.

Throughout the month of March, Healthy Waltham will continue to raise awareness about colorectal cancer prevention by posting tips on TwitterFacebook and our website. We will have an article in the Waltham News Tribune and will be featured on Sally Collura’s “About Town” show on the Waltham Cable Access Channel WCAC-TV. We will also have a display at the Waltham Public Library, 735 Main St., for the month of March. Be sure to stop by and check it out!

A diet rich in fruits and vegetables can help to reduce cancer risk. Photo taken at the Waltham Farmers' Market in fall 2013.

A diet rich in fruits and vegetables can help to reduce cancer risk. Photo taken at the Waltham Farmers’ Market in fall 2013.

Butternut Squash Soup Recipe

One of our favorites! Warm yourself up this winter with this curried butternut squash soup. Did you know that the most popular butternut squash grown today was developed right here in Waltham?

  • 2 onions
  • 3 cloves garlic
  • 1 sweet potato
  • 3 carrots
  • 4 large potateos
  • 2 apples
  • 1 small butternut squash
  • 3-4 parsnips
  • olive oil, butter
  • 2 T. curry paste (or 4-5 t. curry powder, to taste)
  • 1 cup cider
  • 3 c. stock (vegetable or chicken – or even water)

Sautée onions and garlic in a little oil or butter.  Add the rest of the ingredients and simmer until soft, about 45 minutes or more, then puree either in a blender, food processor, or with an immersion blender in the pot.  Reheat and season with salt and pepper.  Serves 12.


Our Tenth Anniversary Year!

It’s our tenth anniversary year, and our first ever Annual Appeal is underway! Please consider helping Healthy Waltham with a gift today. An anonymous donor will match all gifts made by December 31, 2013, up to $2,500, so your gift will go even further. As a 501c(3), all gifts to Healthy Waltham are tax deductible. We are a small organization and every gift is important to ensure we can continue our work in the Waltham community. Thank you for your support! To give, please click on the Donate Now button or if you prefer, mail a check to 510 Moody St., Waltham, MA  02452.imgsvr-2.ashx

School Gardens Ready for Winter

As the winter months approach, it’s time to put the gardens to bed. The gardens will slumber to awaken in the spring, ready to grow again. On a recent beautiful fall day, Judy joined teacher Renee Lockwood of the Northeast Elementary School and her class to prepare their garden for winter. First up: taming the raspberry patch and setting a path to make gathering the raspberries easier. Kids pulled weeds and raked leaves to clear some space. Then, over at the newest section of the garden, the last few crops were gathered: husk cherries, broccoli, arugula and herbs. Tender perennials could be covered to winter over; weeds and dead plants were added to the compost pile. Enjoy these photos of fall gardening. For more gardening information, see our gardening resources here.

School gardens are great places to learn.

School gardens are great places to learn.

Working in the garden.

Working in the garden.









A path takes shape through the raspberry patch.

A path takes shape through the raspberry patch.









Late season broccoli.

Late season broccoli.





Join us for a Walk!

It’s been proven! Walking is one of the best ways to get active and improve your overall health. On Sunday, November 5, 2013, people of all ages are invited to join us for a walk at Stonehurst, the Robert Treat Paine Estate. Our friends from the Appalachian Mountain Club, the Waltham Land Trust, and Stonehurst will lead us on a walk around the historic mansion and then branch off in two groups. Younger kids can continue on a walk around the property as we look for leaves and play some games. Other folks are invited to join the Waltham Land Trust on a walk along the Western Greenway Trail. The fun starts at 1:00 PM and ends approximately 3:00 PM. We’ll be meeting outside the mansion.

Stonehurst is located on Robert Treat Paine Drive. Look for the Stonehurst sign near the rotary by Bentley University on Beaver St. Follow the road uphill to the end and park in the lot on the right. Download our flyer here. Come and bring a friend! Rain or shine except in severe weather conditions.

Want to know more? The Appalachian Mountain Club has recently launched a program called “Outdoors RX” to help encourage people to me more active. Waltham is one of the pilot communities, with walks being organized regularly at different spots around the city. Read about the Outdoors RX program in our Waltham News Tribune Column by clicking here or see the Outdoors RX website here.