Lactation Cookie Recipe
By: Holly Bishop
Here is a recipe for lactation cookies known to be tasty and increase milk supply:
1 ½ c. whole wheat flower
1 tsp baking soda
1 ¾ c. oats (not instant!)
1 tsp salt
¾ c. almond butter or peanut butter
½ c. butter, softened
1 c. flax seed oil
3 T brewer’s yeast
1/3 c. water
1 tsp cinnamon
½ c. sugar
½ c. brown sugar
2 tsp. vanilla extract
2 large eggs
2 c. chocolate chips or raisins or peanut butter cups
1 c. chopped nuts (optional)
Preheat oven 350 degrees Fahrenheit
Combine flour, baking soda, cinnamon and salt into a bowl and mix
In a large bowl, beat almond butter, butter, sugar, brown sugar, vanilla, brewers yeast, flax and water until creamy.
Mix In eggs
Gradually beat in flour mixture
Mix in nuts and chocolate chips or preferred option
Add oats slowly, mix carefully
Place 2” balls of the dough about 1” apart on a greased baking sheet
Press down lightly with a fork or spoon
Bake 12 minutes or until brown
Health Begins Before Birth
By: Virginia Pillsbury
Beverly Earsing says that she has daughters all over North Florida. That is because as a clinical dietitian and the program manager of Health Begins Before Birth, a Second Harvest North Florida initiative, she visits expectant mothers in the program throughout their pregnancy, and up until their babies are two months old. “Our goal is to help provide nutritious food to at-risk pregnant women,” she says. Along with that, the program provides one-on-one support in an effort to improve the gestational age and weight of babies at delivery and decrease the infant mortality rate. “Jacksonville has one of the highest infant mortality rates in the state. That is one reason we work collaboratively with community partners to provide more intensive case management.”
Second Harvest received funding from several local foundations last summer to kick-start the program, and Earsing began her food deliveries in July 2012. “The problems for many of these mothers are the lack of access to healthy food in their neighborhoods and lack of transportation to travel and find healthy food.” she explains. Earsing, and now an assistant, deliver 2,000 pounds of food weekly to 42 active moms in the program. “We have served a total of 62 moms, but more importantly we have created relationships with them – I feel like they are all my daughters.”
These moms need all of the help they can get in the way of resources, encouragement and guidance, believes Earsing. “Our outcomes have been phenomenal so far – the average birth weight has been 7.6 pounds and gestational age has been 39 weeks.
DeAnna, age 18, and the mom of three-month-old Chehon, met Earsing when DeAnna’s mom went to the Shands Little Miracles Baby Shower. “She had a wonderful pregnancy and has a strapping baby boy,” says Earsing. “Miss Beverly has taught me about nutrition and helps me out in every way possible,” says DeAnna.
As a mom, grandmother and great-grandmother herself, Earsing, age 59, understands the need to provide for children. “If you have no resources but you know that you can count on food for the table, that is one less thing to worry about,” she says. And the food she delivers is healthy and nutritious – vegetables and fruit donated by local grocery stores and farms.
The program is funded solely by private donations and must be approved annually to continue. Second Harvest works in partnership with Shands Jacksonville in downtown Jacksonville and Beaches Emergency Assistance Ministry (BEAM) in Jacksonville Beach. “I visit BEAM weekly to meet the pregnant women that go there. Our goal is to have several strategically placed partners throughout Duval County,” she says.
“I am humbled and blessed that I was provided this opportunity to work with Second Harvest. I am so proud of Second Harvest and my community for the vision to do this. It is exciting to see these moms have healthy babies and learn about good nutrition – this could mean amazing ramifications in coming generations,” she says. “I’ve learned that what I eat, my baby gets, and nutrition is a big factor in my baby’s growth,” says DeAnna. “I’ve got to take care of myself so that my baby can be healthy.”
The Health Begins Before Birth program is possible thanks to the following foundations and organizations: DuBow Family Foundation, Weaver Family Foundation, Northeast Florida Healthy Start Coalition supported by the Jaguars Foundation and Florida Blue, The Chartrand Foundation, Shands Jacksonville supported by the Jessie Ball duPont Fund and The Community Foundation in Jacksonville. Donations to support Health Begins Before Birth may be made by calling 904.730.8281 or by visiting WeNourishHope.org
caption: Beverly Earsing and Deanna