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Jo Knows Nutrition

Gourmet Grilled Cheese – Cold Weather Comfort

After a chilly hike at Blue Mountain, a visit to the village for some comfort food was in order. So many dining options, but the grilled cheese parlour, CHEEZED won my heart and stomach with 12 signature sandwiches and their VEGGIE LOVER was to die for. Easy to make in your own kitchen, gourmet grilled cheese sandwiches are delish and can be customized to your liking. Serve with a soup or salad for a decadent and inexpensive lunch or dinner offering.

Our bodies need carbohydrates as a source of fuel and choosing whole grains over refined more often is recommended and associated with a lower risk of heart disease, diabetes and certain cancers. Whole grains are naturally high in fibre which helps you feel full longer.



Whole Grain Bread-2 slices, 2 Tablespoon (30 ml) butter, margarine or seasoned olive oil–add 1/2 Teaspoon (2.5 ml) dried basil to olive oil, 1/4 cup (63 ml) Sun Dried Tomatoes-chopped, 2 Tablespoon (30 ml) Green Onions-sliced, 1/2-2/3 cup (125-167 ml) Havarti or Cheddar Cheese-Regular or Plant-based, 1/4 cup (63 ml) sliced avocado or chopped green pepper.


Whole Grain Bread-2 slices, 2 Tablespoon (30 ml) butter, margarine or seasoned olive oil–add 1/2 Teaspoon (2.5 ml) dried oregano to olive oil, 1/4 cup (63 ml) tomato sauce, 1/2-2/3 cup (125-167 ml) Mozzarella (Regular or Vegan) or Italian Blend Cheese-shredded, 1/4 cup (63 ml) Prosciutto or Vegan Pepperoni-chopped, optional


Whole Grain Bread-2 slices, 2 Tablespoon (30 ml) butter, margarine or seasoned olive oil–add 1/4 Teaspoon (1.25 ml) garlic powder to olive oil,

1/4 cup (63 ml) Feta or Vegan feta-crumbled, 1/2 cup (125 ml) frozen spinach-moisture squeezed out, 2 Tablespoon (30 ml) Green Onions-sliced, 1/4 Teaspoon (1.25 ml) Ground Pepper


Whole Grain Bread-2 slices, 2 Tablespoon (30 ml) butter, margarine or seasoned olive oil–add 1/4 Teaspoon (1.25 ml) garlic powder to olive oil,

1 avocado & 2 Teaspoon (10 ml) lime juice-mashed, 1/2-2/3 cup (125-167 ml) Monterey Jack or Cheddar Cheese-shredded, regular or vegan, salt and pepper to taste


  1. Heat a frying pan on medium heat. Spread the butter, margarine or seasoned olive oil on the outside of each slice of bread.
  2. Add the desired gourmet grilled cheese filling to the non-buttered side of one slice. Top with the other slice.
  3. Place sandwich in the frying pan and cook until golden brown, 3 to 4 minutes. Flip and cook other side until the filling has melted and the bread is golden brown, 2-3 minutes more.


Did You Know?

Olive oil -a major component of the Mediterranean diet – is linked to heart health and longevity. Rich in antioxidants, olive oil may help to protect the body from cellular damage which can lead to a range of health conditions. Although, olive oil is considered the gold standard of fats, butter or margarine in moderation, can also be part of a healthy diet.

Submitted by: Joanne Nijhuis MSc, RD, a consulting, media and culinary dietitian in Simcoe Grey Bruce.


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November is Fall Prevention Month

November is Fall Prevention Month, and the Simcoe Muskoka District Health Unit (SMDHU) is reminding the public that the risk for falling can increase with age and declining health, but steps can be taken to prevent falls.

Falls are a significant public health issue and are the leading cause of injury-related deaths in Simcoe Muskoka with 19,400 emergency department visits, 2,000 hospitalizations and 100 deaths due to falls in 2020. While falls can happen to anyone, for older adults a fall can be life-altering and result in the loss of independence.

When thinking about falls, safety hazards like scatter rugs, stairs, or ice typically come to mind. The health unit’s Staying Independent Home Safety Checklist can help you find and address the risks in and around the home.

However, safety hazards are only one piece of the puzzle. When someone falls there are other risk factors at play that are different for everyone. Some of these factors cannot be changed, such as one’s age, gender, race, medical condition, and cognition. There are also factors that can be changed, including a person’s physical environment, their health behaviours or choices, access to health, dental and pharma care, as well as access to social and physical activities.

Like a jigsaw puzzle, preventing a fall can be complicated and requires looking at the many different pieces that influence a person’s risk level. To prevent falls it is important to consider how to make improvements to as many changeable risk factors as possible, both in an individual’s work and personal life.

To learn more about fall prevention visit fallpreventionmonth.ca, the health unit’s pages on aging and wellness or contact Health Connection at 705-721-7520 or 1-877-721-7520, weekdays from 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m


Want Happily Ever After?

“For a marriage to have any chance, every day at least six things should go unsaid.”


In the early stages of a romantic relationship, part of the reason it feels so wonderful is that not only are we on our best behavior, but we give our partner a lot of positive feedback.

We listen attentively to all that is said, validating and supporting what we are hearing. We give each other our undivided attention. If there are things about the other that are not perfect, we just let them go because there is so much we do like. We are happy, not only because we love this person, but also because it feels delicious to be loved so unconditionally.

We create a happily-ever-after scenario in our minds, expecting that we will always feel this loved and cherished. We have only good things to say about our partner when we speak with others.

As couples get further into the relationship, things often change. Little criticisms can begin to creep in. Often these relate to ways in which the other is different from us. The assumption is that our way is correct, and the partner is doing it wrong. The critic sets him or herself up as the standard against which the other is to be judged.

Slowly, the one who was once complimented and adored, becomes the recipient of an often steady stream of comments about what he or she is doing wrong. When this happens, is it any wonder that the relationship is not what it once was?

There is a big difference between criticizing and asking for what we need. No one likes to be criticized. When we criticize, we are acting like a parent and treating our partner like a child. When we have an adult conversation about what we would like, this shows mutual respect.

Often communication is a problem, and couples end up in conflict rather than working together to find solutions. It is a good idea, while still in the early stages of a relationship, to have a discussion about how differences will be handled. Read together about effective communication in relationships. Think of this as insurance for a healthy relationship.

A partner probably chose us because it felt good to be around us. He or she felt loved, appreciated, and respected, no doubt assuming that would make for a happy relationship. It is tough to wake up months or years later wondering where all that good stuff went.

The truth is that if couples ensured that the other felt their love, appreciation and respect on a daily basis, the warm, good feelings of the early days would still be there. In fact, they would grow deeper.

If you wish to improve your relationship, criticizing your partner is not the way to do so. Showing interest, caring, concern and love, as you did in the beginning, is the best way to revitalize the relationship and keep it strong.

Gwen Randall-Young is an author and award-winning psychologist. For permission to reprint this article, or to obtain books, CDs or MP3s, visit www.gwen.ca. Follow Gwen on Facebook for inspiration.


Ask a Therapist: by Sarah Covey

On Disqualifying the Positive

Q: Sometimes I feel strange when I receive positive feedback or try to celebrate an accomplishment. It seems like I shouldn’t be focusing on it too much – does that make sense?


A: I think that disqualifying the positive is a common cognitive distortion that most people have experienced at one time or another. But, like most distortions, there may be a few people who struggle with this more often than others.

In a way, disqualifying the positive is a form of minimizing in which a positive event is rejected, downgraded, or dismissed as unimportant. It is a strategy for making something positive seem insignificant even when that is not the case at all. It tends to paint a negative picture of every circumstance because the positive elements are not considered with the same weight or validity as the negative ones.

This negative bias is a problem because it causes an imbalance in the processing of information in your own mind. Even when there is good in a situation it is down played or disqualified so that only negative assessments dominate the story you are telling yourself about your circumstances. And, when all you allow yourself to consider are the negative components, you will naturally be much more cynical and jaded in your responses and perspectives. It may lead to undue critical thoughts, discouragement, grief, or other challenging emotions..

On the other hand, disqualifying the negative components can also have its dangers and distortions. There can be a form of toxic positivity that dismisses pain or suffering in order to pivot too quickly and superficially to a silver lining and this can be highly distressing and unhelpful. This distortion should be evaluated and avoided as well.

From a healthy thinking perspective, it is important to take in all the information and be as objective as possible, adopting a posture of curiosity and balanced consideration. When you are struggling to see hope or strength in a challenging situation, it can be helpful to talk to an unbiased, objective third party like a therapist to help elevate and identify a more balanced cognitive approach.

Therapy can help people to find healthier mindsets that are honest and provide a more complete picture that doesn’t disqualify the positive while still holding space for the reality of the pain or challenge. Balance in our thought life can feel elusive but it is possible to find it with the right help.

Covey Wellness Centre is located at 12B Stone Street and our bookshop is open to the public every day except Sunday. Please visit CoveyWellnessCentre.com and submit the form on our Contact page to book an appointment or to inquire about our products and services. Follow us on social media @coveywellnesscentre and download and follow at Eventbrite for the latest updates and event tickets!


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