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March is Nutrition Month! It’s important to remember to eat a well-balanced diet that includes the major food groups: vegetables, fruits, grains, and protein. Our bodies are our temple and we should treat them right – we only get one!
KPG Healthcare knows the power of snacks – we love them. However, snacking can be dangerous when you have chips, salty foods or even fatty foods laying around the office. We decided to break down some healthy snack options by Fruits, Vegetables, Nuts, and Alternatives.
Fresh fruit is a great choice to have in-between meals or having some dried fruit can be a great substitution. If you choose to bring dried fruit, make sure that it’s not covered in a layer of sugar!
If eating fruit alone is not your vibe, you can also get creative with how you serve your fruit for lunch.
Apple Cookies are a great example of changing things up from normal whole fruit. Cut your apples into thin slices, layer it up with some peanut butter to keep you full until your next meal, and you have the choice of sprinkling some healthy toppings like coconut flakes, dark chocolate bits, nuts, and/or cinnamon!
If apples aren’t your taste, you can substitute it with bananas too! Bananas are a wonderful addition in oatmeal, with peanut butter, in smoothies, or with more nuts! Bananas contain potassium and while it doesn’t contain as much potassium as leafy greens, its sure beats eating spinach by itself.
Vegetables are another great snack choice for those who like to cut their sugar intake. Vegetables should be eaten every day for your daily nutrients such as fiber, vitamins, protein, and potassium.
We know vegetables may not be everyone’s favorite snack, but it can help with anyone looking to work on that summer body!
Celery Sticks with Peanut Butter is always a go-to snack that keeps you full and keeps your calorie intake low. Eating celery is close to eating zero calories plus with the added peanut butter, you’ll stay content until your next meal. Again, you can always spice up your celery sticks and peanut butter by adding some nuts, dried fruit, or spices on top.
Celery may not be everyone’s #1 pick, so we also recommend Carrot Sticks with Hummus! Another easy snack that is both healthy and easy to prepare the night before. Hummus is great to ease your way into plant-based foods with chickpeas being the main ingredient. Chickpeas are another great source of protein packing in 10g of protein per cup AND 10g of dietary fiber. That’s a winner in our book!
Nuts are a fantastic option for healthy snacks. Nuts come in all shapes in sizes from walnuts to peanuts, cashews to almonds. Nuts can provide a variety of nutrients like healthy fats, fiber, and protein. Nuts may also reduce the risk factors for metabolic syndromes, such as high blood pressure and cholesterol levels.
Homemade Trail Mix is a great way of combining a variety of nuts with some added dried fruits and/or chocolate bits. Trail mix can be combined with a variety of other dried fruits, nuts, vegetable chips, and granola – to name a few.
Nuts such as almonds, pecans, cashews, and pistachios can also be used with some other foods like salads, yogurt, smoothies, or you can eat them alone! Just make sure there isn’t too much salt because that would defeat the purpose of healthy snacking.
When we say alternative snacks we actually mean snacks such as protein bars/shakes, yogurt, oatmeal, and anything else which isn’t listed above.
Alternative snacks are great for quick and on-the-go situations, but these types of snacks can also be very dangerous. It’s important to look at the nutrition labels when purchasing alternative/quick snacks.
For example, Protein Shakes from Odwalla or something similar contains an enormous amount of sugar and sodium. One of those Odwalla Protein Shakes contains 2 servings instead of one, and that can hurt you more than help.
Some great alternative snacks are Quest Nutrition Bars, Kind Bars, Nature’s Path Qi’a Bars, or you can even make your granola bars!
KPG Healthcare cares about your nutrition but we also care about what you put into your body. With these helpful snack ideas for your daily activities or workplace, you’ll be eating a balanced diet in no time!
If you’re interested in finding more delicious snack ideas, check out this link from SnackNation!
KPG Healthcare had a phenomenal 2019, including getting on the list for the Los Angeles Business Journal’s 100 Fastest Growing Companies, Staffing Industry Analysts’ Fastest Growing US Firms, Inc. 5000’s Most Successful Companies in America, and our first expansion office in Las Vegas for our Locum Tenens division.
With that being said, we kicked off 2020 by sending three of our Travel Nursing family members to the beautiful state of Arizona to open our latest office expansion.
That’s right! You heard it correctly, KPG Healthcare is now operating out of Scottsdale, Arizona!
When we decided to open the Scottsdale office, we had to ask which of our Travel Nursing family members would dare take on this responsibility. Luckily, three of our finest recruiters said they would take on this opportunity and those three members are Tiko, Elaina, and Omar!
Tiko is the Recruitment Manager for the Travel Nursing division and has been with KPG Healthcare for more than four years. As one of the few members to be with the Travel Nursing division for that amount of time, he has been able to see both the team and the company grow during his time here.
“I am most excited about the endless potential for growth,” Tiko exclaimed, “The possibilities are endless!” Arizona is a new frontier for KPG Healthcare and this will allow the team, plus any future members, to focus their efforts on different parts of the US.
As the recruitment manager, Tiko is determined to show “that through the years of hard work in our Los Angeles office, we have created a successful, positive, and progressive business model that we can replicate just about anywhere in the US.”
Tiko’s Arizona Bucket List: Hike and explore the surrounding trails and amazing viewpoints Arizona has to offer.
Elaina is one of our Travel Nursing Recruiters and has been with KPG Healthcare for more than half a year. As one of our “newer” recruiters, Elaina has made herself a force to be reckoned with as a recruiter – we couldn’t be happier to have her on the team.
During her time in Arizona, Elaina hopes to “continue growing as a recruiter, helping out new team members start their journey with KPG Healthcare, and find more great opportunities for our nurses.”
Elaina has faith that the new office will help the team with a greater depth of knowledge for Arizona and allow them the opportunity to focus on increasing the company brand exposure throughout the US.
Elaina’s Arizona Bucket List: All the great restaurants, amazing hikes and exploring all the adventures Arizona has to offer.
Omar is one of our Senior Recruiters and started his KPG Healthcare journey 2 years ago. Omar has grown to become one of our finest Travel Nursing recruiters and we are lucky to have him be part of the Arizona team.
Omar has been with the KPG Healthcare family for a couple of years with the opportunity to see and assist in the growth of the Travel Nursing team and the company as a whole during this time.
During his time in Arizona, Omar is looking to expand his role in the company and continue to progress forward in his career. “I want to be able to help grow the company even more than I did last year.”
Omar’s Arizona Bucket List: Food, national parks, hikes, and sporting events.
We look forward to hearing about all of your accomplishments in Arizona! We are thankful to have such an awesome team to open our Arizona office, keep up the great work!
Sending all of the love from California. ❤️
You finally have the chance to take an assignment out-of-state but you have a pet…what should you do? Have no fear, KPG Healthcare is here to give you some helpful advice if you’re planning to travel with your pets!
Check out this helpful page from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) that outlines what YOU should do before traveling with your pet via airlines.
Research is the most important step in anything we do. It’s incredibly important when deciding on whether you should bring your pet with you on an assignment.
The biggest question and determining factor when traveling with a pet is whether to use an airline or to drive.
Different airlines will have different rules about how a pet should travel. Your pet can either be checked-in and placed in a safe room within the cargo hold or placed in the cabin with you. One of the determining factors in whether your pet will be with you or in the cargo hold is the breed and size.
For example, American Airlines does not accept snub-nosed dogs of any mix (Shih Tzu, Pugs, Boston Terrier, etc). Southwest Airlines will allow a pet into the cabin if the pet fits within a Pet Carrier with maximum dimensions of 18.5’ long x 8.5’ high x 13.5’ high. Check the airline’s pet policy before booking flights: Southwest Airlines, American Airlines, United Airlines, Alaska Airlines, JetBlue Airlines, Delta Airlines.
Your pet will cost anywhere between $95-125 to be placed in the cabin. Some airlines may not allow more than one animal per person, but other airlines may accept two animals in one pet carrier. Regardless, you will need to make sure you indicate to the airline company that you will be bringing a pet on-board/check-in.
Also, airlines may require documentation from your vet verifying your pet is safe to fly.
Driving is the other option and, arguably, the easier solution. The majority of the travel nurses who take assignments with their pets will travel the country by car or RV. Traveling by car or RV allows travel nurses the opportunity to take assignments with their pets anywhere in the country.
There may be some restrictions on crossing state lines with your pet, but make sure they are up-to-date on their vaccinations. Each state will have its own rules and regulations about bringing pets into the state.
For example, Hawaii has strict rules on bringing any animal into the state. Check out California’s regulations.
You should double-check your car is prepared for a long journey with your pets. There should be space for your pet to sit and lay down, enough food and water to get to your destination and make sure there are frequent stops for the potty, to run/walk, and to eat/drink.
It’s important to remember to ask your vet if your pet is well enough to travel via airlines or on a long road trip before departure. Vaccinations and health checks are important to consider when thinking about taking your pet on a flight.
If you plan on taking your pet on a plane, you CANNOT travel within 30 days of your pets’ rabies vaccination. Some airlines require you to microchip your pet before the flight.
If your pet has all their vaccinations and is good to fly, research a vet in your assignment city. It’s good to know where you can safely take your pet while on assignment in case of an emergency. It’s always a good idea to reach out to that vet in your assignment location to verify if your pet is accepted there for treatments.
Housing is another factor you should research before taking an assignment.
Not all housing, even Airbnb’s, will allow pets! It’s important to double-check with the host or leasing company to verify if pets are allowed OR if there is a pet deposit you would need to pay. If you’re not sure about pets, always ask questions!
Now that you’ve done your research and have decided to bring your pet along for the assignment, it’s time to plan!
With the prior research, you should have an idea of whether or not you will be driving or flying, where you’ll be staying, and located a vet nearby.
If you plan on driving to your assignment, it’s best to pack and plan with your pet in mind. A cleaning kit will come in handy for any accidents that might appear throughout the trip. A goodie bag with treats, toys, potty bags, and leashes should be kept together for easy access during any rest stop.
If you plan on flying, make sure you have completed any requirements brought forth by the airline company, received a clean bill of health for your pet, and are up to date on vaccinations. Additionally, make sure you have indicated you will be bringing a pet on board the flight and the carry-on bag fits the dimensions.
Cost-of-living will be different everywhere you go. It is wise to budget and calculate how much of your income will be going toward your pet(s). Creating a budget is a great way to see where your costs go and where you need to make cuts to save. Check out this website to compare the cost of living between where you live and where you’ll go!
By this stage, you’re about ready to head to your next assignment location with your pet! You’ve done the research and you’ve done the planning, all that’s left is to enjoy the fruits of your labor.
If you’re flying, try to remain calm and remember to keep your pet in mind. Make sure you aren’t feeding your pet right before a flight, but allow plenty of time for them to eat and drink. Go to any pet relieving areas before your flight to avoid any accidents.
If you’re driving, make sure to enjoy every moment of the journey! Stop and smell the roses, literally. Take your pet to a field of flowers and let them run wild. Just make sure you are taking plenty of breaks and resting when you can.
The only thing left to do is to enjoy the journey to your next assignment.