Healthy Lifestyles – February 2021

Hands in the shape of a heart

You might be wondering why heart health is such a popular topic these days. A healthy heart is a great gauge of overall health. Thankfully there are easy ways to enhance the health of our hearts. Most are quite easy to add to your daily life. Here are some ways to keep your heart pumping:

  1. Add in Heart-Healthy Fats: Omega-3 fatty acids are found in specific foods and when added to the diet have been shown to decrease the risk of heart disease.
    • Fatty fish: salmon, cod, mahi-mahi, herring, mackerel, sardines, and tuna
    • Nuts & Seeds: almonds, walnuts, pistachios, pecans, brazil nuts, cashews, hazelnuts, macadamia nuts, sunflower seeds, sesame seeds, chia seeds, flaxseeds, hemp seeds, pumpkin seeds (aka pepitas)
  2. Amp Up the Fiber-Rich Foods: Think of fiber like a scrub brush inside your heart and arteries. Diets high in fiber have been shown to decrease the risk of heart disease.
    • Whole grains: brown rice, rolled oats, whole wheat bread, barley
    • Legumes: kidney beans, lentils, pinto beans
    • Vegetables: broccoli, brussels sprouts, kale, artichokes
    • Whole fruit: swap out the fruit juice and grab an orange, pear, apple, or banana
  3. De-stress & Breathe Deeply:
    • Carve out time for yourself: go on a walk, put your phone down for 30 minutes, or read a book for pleasure
    • Meditate: sitting in stillness gives your body and mind a much needed break from our fast-paced lives. Look up free meditations on YouTube or try out a meditation app such as Insight Timer, Calm, or Headspace.
    • Breathe: we often forget to breathe deeply. Try inhaling for a count of five, hold for five seconds, and then exhale for a count of five. Repeat five rounds and be amazed at how refreshed you’ll feel.
  4. Get Moving! (Always be sure to check with your doctor first)
    • Add a brisk walk in before, at lunch, or after work.
    • Find a hill or stairs in your neighborhood to walk or jog up to get your heart pumping.
    • Pick at least one item from each category above to add in to your life to keep your heart healthy & happy!


Check out these online resources and Apps

Use your phone to keep tabs on your heart. Track heart rate and pulse using your phone’s camera! Click to download the app Instant Heart Rate.
Want to know how much fiber is in the foods you eat? Use the Nutrients app to get all the details and help you choose those high-fiber, heart-healthy options!

Click here to learn more about heart healthy fats!

Financial Wellbeing

Welcome to Principal, Covenant Care’s new financial wellbeing and 401K partner

Free Webinar Series – Webinars are held the third Wednesday of every month, 9 a.m. PST
Financial education in under 30 minutes
Your financial goals are unique and so is your path to get there. Our award-winning* webinar series is here to help along the way. In less than 30 minutes, you can learn more about a financial topic that matters to you.

Register for an upcoming webinar or catch up on your time with a library of replays.

This month’s Webinar
February 17th
9:00 a.m. PST

Get a Game Plan: Tackle Debt and Build Emergency Savings

No matter how much you make or what stage of life you’re in, it’s important to prioritize spending and saving so you can reach your financial goals. By creating a plan to tackle your debt and build an emergency fund, you can protect yourself from future unplanned expenses. Register to join us for the February webinar and learn how you could be on your way to a more financially secure future.

Register for this webinar

Future Topics

  • Expanding and protecting savings
  • Debt and emergency savings (also in Spanish)
  • HSAs and health care
  • Reassessing finances after a market downturn
  • Investing how-to
  • Women and people of color
  • Protecting assets and leaving a legacy (also in Spanish)
  • Nearing retirement checklist
  • Saving for college and student loans
  • Estate planning
  • Year-end tax prep and tax reform
  • Social Security

Can’t make an upcoming webinar? View a replay anytime at LearnNowOnDemand

Winner of the 2020 IMEA Star Awards, Participant Webinars, Experiential Education category, large asset level.
Topics and dates are subject to change.
Insurance products and plan administrative services are provided through Principal Life Insurance Company, a member of the Principal Financial Group®, Des Moines, Iowa 50392.
PT436A-09 | © 2020 Principal Financial Services, Inc. | 12/2020 | 1435367-122020

Mental Health

Brought to you by NAMI

The Emotional PPE Project connects healthcare workers in need with licensed mental health professionals who can help.

No cost. No insurance. Just a trained professional to talk to.

All Services Provided Through The Emotional PPE Project Are Free Of Charge.

The Emotional PPE Project is a directory that provides contact information of volunteer mental health practitioners to healthcare workers whose mental health has been impacted by the COVID-19 crisis. The Emotional PPE Project is an independent tax-exempt nonprofit (501(c)(3)) organization fully staffed by volunteers.

You may contact us at: [email protected] // Click here to review our Terms of Use // Click here to read our FAQs Follow Us On Social Media!

Family Health/Working Parent Support

Whole Brain Parenting – Free Webinar!  with Justin Waring Crane, MA, OTR/L
January 7th, 2021  |  12:00 – 1:00pm PST

Parental Mental Health Toolkit

Brought to you by OVIA Health

How to ask friends and family for support
Author – Paige Beauchemin, RN Director of parental wellbeing coaching at Ovia Health

“Reach out” might be some of the most common and most frustrating advice to get when you’re depressed, or struggling with another mental health concern, since the very nature of mental illness can make reaching out feel impossible. The other people in your life are going to have an impact on how you feel and how you relate to the world whether you reach out to them or not – and when you’re having a hard time, the people who love you most are going to want to help you out. Wanting to doesn’t mean they’ll know how, though, and it’s also possible that you won’t know exactly what they can do, either.

Ways family and friends can help

Whether you open up the conversation or they do, there’s a good chance that, if you’re having a hard time, at some point, a friend, family member, or partner, will ask you what they can do to help. When figuring out an answer to that question, here are a few thoughts to keep in mind.

Start strong:
If you’re having trouble opening up a conversation about mental health when you’re having trouble, it can be helpful to try to have that first conversation about your mental health, and the support you might find most helpful, on a day when you’re already feeling pretty good. This can mean starting a conversation yourself, or asking someone who offers to help on a bad day if you can wait to have that conversation later. It can be tempting to just enjoy good days when they come, and not bring up bad days during this time, but having a conversation when you’re feeling better can help you feel more in control, and can help you reflect back in a more useful way.

Set a check-in:
If one of the things you struggle with in managing your mental health is following treatment plans, or sticking to lifestyle changes (like changes to your sleep schedule or exercising regularly), setting up check-ins with family, friends, or your partner, can be a great way to make sure you give your treatment plan the commitment it needs. Setting this up with the people in your life yourself, and choosing who to talk to about it, can help you maintain control and agency in your own treatment. More than that, if you don’t want to talk about the why, you can still benefit from the support of the people in your life just by involving them in your new routines – say, by setting up a weekly jog with a friend.

Have them do the research:
Yes, communication with the people in your life is important, but that doesn’t mean it’s your job to teach a course on mental health to each important person in your life. In some cases, it can feel cathartic for the person dealing with a mental illness to talk about the details of that illness, but for those who don’t feel like this kind of conversation is helpful, it’s totally reasonable to ask a family member, partner, or friend to do some of their own research.

Take care of themselves:
Partners, family, and friends can be put under extra stress when they have a loved one with mental health concerns or mental illness. If you’re usually one of the people someone in your support system turns to and you’re struggling at the moment, they may end up struggling as well. If a family member or friend wants to support you, it’s important that they also get the support they need, whether it’s their own family or friends or a therapist.

Trust you:
Dealing with mental health concerns can feel disempowering, but your loved ones shouldn’t contribute to that feeling. You’re the person who knows the most about how it feels to live your life, and even when mental illness is having an impact on the way you act and the things you feel, you’re still the authority on your feelings and needs. Sometimes family members and friends who offer support when a loved one is having a hard time can forget that, so it’s never a bad idea for the important people in your life to be reminded.

For more parenting support tips, click on the source link below

Source: Parental Mental Health Toolkit

Carrier News & Views

Updates on the COVID 19 Vaccine

A Message from Kaiser…

What to expect when you get your COVID 19 Vaccine
When it’s your turn to get a COVID-19 vaccine, we want you to be prepared. Here are some things you can expect:

  • Getting 2 injections. All but one of the vaccines that have been or may be approved for use require 2 doses. The doses are given several weeks apart, and the same authorized vaccine brand must be used for both — the vaccines are not interchangeable.
  • Receiving a vaccination card. When you get your first dose, you’ll be given a card that describes the brand of vaccine. If 2 doses are required, your card will show the date for receiving the second dose of the same vaccine brand. It will also serve as proof of vaccination, so keep it in a safe place (consider taking a picture of the card as an extra safety measure).
  • Experiencing possible side effects. Like with other vaccines, some people have reported feeling temporary flu-like symptoms, lasting 1 to 2 days on average, after receiving a dose. Thesymptoms are a sign that your body is building immunity to the virus. These side effects may include:
    • Pain at the injection site
    • Fatigue
    • Headache
    • Muscle pain
    • Chills
    • Joint pain
    • Fever
  • As with most regularly recommended vaccines, some side effects may be more severe in a small percentage of people. If you experience severe side effects, please contact your doctor. Although extremely rare, allergic reactions can occur. If you have a history of severe allergic reaction, if you carry an EpiPen, have had a severe reaction to any ingredients of a COVID-19 vaccine, or had a severe allergic reaction after a previous dose of a COVID-19 vaccine, you should not receive the vaccine until you consult with your physician.
  • Continuing safe habits. Getting the vaccine is an important part of our efforts to slow and eventually stop the spread of COVID-19, and as experts continue to learn more about the vaccine protection, it will be important for everyone to continue using all the tools available to us, such as covering your mouth and nose with a mask, washing hands often, and social distancing measures.

Source: Learn more at

A Message from Anthem…

Getting vaccinated against COVID-19 is one of the best and safest ways to protect yourself and everyone around you. Learn how your Anthem plan covers the vaccine and your vaccination, how health authorities are ensuring vaccine safety, and when the vaccine will be available.

  1. Anthem members will receive the COVID-19 vaccination at no cost.
    Anthem will cover the cost of the COVID-19 vaccine. Anthem members won’t have out-of-pocket costs for the vaccine during this national public health emergency. This applies to all members, regardless of the type of health plan they have, or which doctor or healthcare professional they choose to visit for COVID-19 vaccination.
  2. The FDA has approved the vaccine.
    Researchers have studied vaccine reactions and potential side effects throughout the trials. The FDA and outside experts carefully reviewed all of the clinical trial data when weighing approval of the vaccine. The FDA, CDC, and vaccine manufacturers will continuously monitor vaccine safety and quality.
  3. Vaccine distribution has begun.
    Vaccine supplies will increase over time. The CDC says all adults should have access to the vaccine in 2021. Right now, the CDC recommends that healthcare workers and residents of nursing homes and long-term-care facilities be the first Americans to receive the vaccine.

The CDC recommends that frontline essential workers and people who are 75 years old or older be vaccinated next. Other essential workers, people who are 65-74 years old, and people who are 16-64 years old and have high-risk medical conditions would follow.


Herb Artichoke White Bean Dip


1 15oz can artichoke hearts, drained and excess juice squeezed out
1 ½ cups cannellini beans, drained and rinsed
1 tbsp lemon juice
2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
1 tbsp fresh herbs (such as thyme & oregano)
Black pepper to taste
¼ cup feta cheese
1/8 tsp salt (optional)


Drain artichokes and squeeze all liquid from them. Place artichokes, white beans, lemon juice, olive oil, fresh herbs, and black pepper in a food processor or blender. Pulse ingredients until creamy. Fold in feta cheese and salt to taste. Serve immediately or refrigerate in an airtight container for up to five days.  


Quick Links

All Employees

  • Headspace Meditation App
    Free section- Weathering the Storm-
    to learn more, click here
  • Calm Meditation App
    Free section for all,
    to access, click here
  • Employee Assistance Program (EAP)- from UNUM & Health Advocate. We are here for you 24/7 – 1-800-854-1446; – The EAP can help provide COVID-19 support, grief counseling, stress/anxiety relief, and more, and is available to all employees
  • Medical Bill Saver Advantage via your EAP –  1-800-854-1446; and is available to all employees
  • For the latest on COVID 19– CDC website at
  • Your Financial Life Matters (Wells Fargo) For more help, click here or call 1-844-258-7773 for a complimentary savings or credit conversation and receive a personalized plan. Representatives are available Monday through Saturday, 9:00 a.m. to 7:00 p.m. Eastern Time

Kaiser Members

  • Calm Meditation App
    Full access free for Kaiser Members click here
  • MyStrength
    Free to Kaiser Permanente members
    to help support their emotional well-being.
    Members can simply go to and click ‘Get Started’ to register and use myStrength on their desktop, tablet or smartphone.
  • Class Pass –  Learn More
  • Kaiser Coronavirus Hotline (available 24/7) – (877) 813-7297. After speaking with a Kaiser Permanente representative, you will be directed to the appropriate care options.
  • Kaiser’s COVID-19 Information and updates visit:  CORONAVIRUS/COVID-19: Learn how to protect yourself and get care
  • is a valuable resource for information and member communications, as well as a link to any telehealth services. If you haven’t already done so, please register on     
  • Kaiser Members- Getting Care:  It’s important to contact KP before coming in. Members should call the Appointment and Advice Call Center if they are feeling sick. They will be guided through a specific screening protocol over the phone. Depending on the answers provided, the member will be directed to the most appropriate care, while protecting other members, patients and employees.
  • Kaiser Drive Up: Drive up testing is accessible by physician referral/order only. If drive-up testing is available nearby, members will be notified of the appropriate arrangements.
  • Kaiser Virtual Care – Manage your care with
    No matter what life throws your way, you can connect to care where and when you want it. E-visits, telephone, and video appointments are simple and secure ways to get care and save yourself an office visit. They even be tracked in your electronic health record. All you need is a computer, smartphone, or mobile device. Click here to get access to care.
  • Kaiser Members- access to E-visits- Log in at or go to Get Care on the KP mobile app

Anthem Members

  • Anthem Coronavirus Information –  
  • Anthem Sydney Care mobile app. Download the Sydney Care mobile app from the App Store® or Google Playâ„¢ click here to learn more
  • Anthem Member Symptom Assessment
    Find out what your symptoms may mean by answering five quick questions. This tool uses guidelines issued by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).

Begin the Assessment
Find a COVID-19 Test Facility

  • Anthem/Aunt Bertha social support services
    Our partnership with Aunt Bertha provides you with a solution to help connect you and your family to social services in your communities if you need it. You can find services such as help with food, housing, job training, and transportation by visiting Aunt Bertha and entering your ZIP code.
  • Anthem Skill – Ask Alexa for your health plan info.
    Get quick, hands-free help with the Anthem Skill. Whether you need a new ID card or get curious if you’re about to reach your deductible, just say the words, “Alexa, ask Anthem…” to get quick answers about your health plan. The Anthem Skill works through Alexa-ready devices, like an Amazon Echo or on your mobile device using the Amazon Alexa app.

Enable the Anthem Skill today!

RxBenefits/Express Scripts

  • To learn more about RxBenefits™ response to Coronavirus (COVID-19) including access to early refills and retail shipping options click here

Live your best life!