March Wellness: National Nutrition Month

National Nutrition Month is an annual campaign created by the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics to help make healthy food choices and create healthy habits.

March is still one of our Upstate New York winter months which can mean less activity, more stress, and perhaps eating more sugar and processed foods. “According to the American Dietetic Association, people tend to either eat too much or too little when depressed or under stress. Eat too much and you find yourself dealing with sluggishness and weight gain. Eat too little and resulting exhaustion makes this a hard habit to break.” (Source: Sutter Health. “Eating Well for Mental Health.”)

Foods that can boost your mental health includes plenty of fruits and vegetables along with food rich in omega-3 fatty acids, like salmon. Excellent brain foods include dark green leafy vegetables, nuts, seeds, beans, and lentils. Below are some simple recipes to find ways to add this into your winter diet.

Additional Resources

Lentils- A cup and a half of lentils contains as much protein as a three-ounce chicken breast but that’s not all; they also contain dietary fiber, copper, phosphorus, and manganese that you can’t get from meat. Click the link to find an easy recipe to try adding lentils to your diet.

Dark Leafy Greens- We all say we need to eat more greens but don’t limit yourself to salads during these cold winter months. Check out this soup recipe to keep you warm while eating healthy.

Salmon-Salmon filets can be expensive in the grocery store. Check out this quick recipe that uses canned salmon to make the entree with a side of mango cucumber salsa.

MyPlate- This website has numerous tools to help get you or keep you on track for healthy eating. Check out the app that helps you keep track of your servings.

March Food Drive: Building a Better Community by Fighting Hunger Today!

In honor of National Nutrition Month, we are hosting a food drive to promote getting active in your community as part of our “getting active for your health in 2023” campaign. All donations will be delivered to local food pantries to support the communities where our members reside. Tompkins County, Village of Groton, Town of Dryden, Town of Homer, and Village of Horseheads have all volunteered to have drop off locations available to all our Consortium members. See the flyer for locations and hours of operation.

Blue4U Clinics March/ April 2023

The GTCMHIC, has partnered with Integrated Health 21 (IH21) to provide employees on the Platinum, Silver, Gold, or Bronze health plans with a clinically sound biometric screening. The Consortium supports and encourages the healthy behaviors that translate to a better quality of life, for life!

What to Expect

The purpose of the voluntary Blue4U program is first to help you understand your current health status, then to provide the tools that can help you reach and maintain your wellness goals.

If you or your spouse/domestic partner choose to participate, you will complete a health questionnaire and have a biometric screening provided by a licensed clinician, which includes a (fasting if possible) blood sample for testing, and measured height, weight, and BMI. The clinics will be located conveniently at various municipal locations, or you can visit an offsite lab as well.

All your information will be kept confidential. After your screening you will receive your results packet in the mail and can view them online through your Blue4U Wellness Dashboard.

To Register for a Blue4U Clinic

Complete your online registration here

To set up your account:

  1. Click on, "New User? Register Here."
  2. Enter your first name as it is listed on your insurance card or payroll check, last name, birthday, and the company code.

Note: For City of Ithaca and Tompkins County incentive eligible employees, you will need a different company code to access your incentive program.

Company Code for all participants across the Consortium: GTCMHIC

Company Code for City of Ithaca incentive eligible employees only: ITHACA

Company Code for Tompkins County incentive eligible employees only: TOMPKINS

  1. Please create your username and password. Enter your email address, phone number, and submit.

After you complete the lifestyle questionnaire, you will be able to register for a screening. Click on, “click here to register.” You will be redirected to the online scheduler. All locations available to you will be displayed and you can select a date/time/location that works for your schedule.

To Access Blue4U Health Coaching

If you did not reach the healthy benchmarks, you have access to free health coaching available through IH21. IH21 Health Coaches have received extensive training and come from a variety of clinical backgrounds including registered nurses, dieticians, exercise physiologists, and health educators with coaching certifications.

The following options can be used to set up coaching sessions.

Phone: 1-888-823-3827


Log into your account, the same account you created to register for a Blue4U clinic, access your results page, select “Ask A Health Coach” under heart age. Enter your question or coaching request.

IH21 will receive your request and a coach will send an outreach communication and set up additional coaching.

Upcoming Events

April 18th at 5:00pm- Advance Care Planning Virtual Program- This program helps people understand the importance of advance care planning and reviews the tools available to help them complete a health care proxy and living will. See flyer for details!

June- Hiking Challenge- This challenge will encourage you to get outside and enjoy the great outdoors! More information will be posted in the coming months.

Be on the lookout for more information to come on these events in your inbox or on the Consortium website:

Dig deeper into your wellness journey by following our Facebook Page: GTC Municipal Health Insurance Consortium