Lighten Up Ramsey is back for a third year boasting a new partner, theme, and challenge.  The Ramsey Board of Health is now collaborating with the Ramsey ShopRite in a challenge to "Strive for Five."  The 2016 goal is to have community members--individuals and entire families--make an effort to eat at least three vegetables and two fruits every day.

The program will start with a kickofff on March 6 and continue for four weeks--the amount of time it takes, some say, to form a new habit. The hope is that it will become a life-long habit.

All "Strive for Five" participants will be given a diary to record the number of fruits and vegetables they or their family have consumed each day.  At the end of every week they will record the number of days they or their family have met the five per day goal on the homepage of the Lighten Up Ramsey, Website.  At the end of the challenge the names of those who most often met the daily goal will be put in a pool for prize drawings.

During the month-long challenge every Monday at 1:30 pm and 7 pm there will be "Talk and Tasting" sessions led by Sondra Tackett, MS, RD. Check the Events tab on this site for the topic and location.

Throughout the challenge participants will also be encouraged to share their favorite vegetable and fruit recipes by either bringing them to one of the "Talk and Tasting" sessions or emailing them to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.. There will be a poster contest for children up to age 12--March 21 is the deadline for submissions

The emphasis on smart exercise and slimming down of previous Lighten Up Ramsey challenges continues--even though there are no set goals. Participants are again encouraged to walk every day and to record the miles walked each week on the Website.  Weekly weigh-ins are optional. There will be scales at the kickoff and educational sessions and space for recording weights in the diary. We hope the Strive for Five mantra will encourage people to substitute healthy foods for high caloric non-nutritious food and help with weight control.