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Governor Little and Mayor Blad Encourage Idahoans to Celebrate a World of Flavors

March 17, 2022

Both Governor Brad Little and Pocatello Mayor Brian Blad declared March National Nutrition Month, and March 9 Registered Dietitian Nutritionists Day. 

“Nutrition is vital in preventing most chronic diseases and registered dietitian nutritionists (RDNs) play an important role in improving the health, nutrition and overall quality of life of all Idahoans,” master’s student Dennis Nguyen told the Pocatello City Council. “You may have heard of a nutritionist. A nutritionist does not have the same credentials as a registered dietitian. They cannot provide medical nutrition therapy, which is the evidence-based process used by RDNs to help treat and manage chronic diseases such as diabetes, heart disease, and obesity.”  

Nguyen was joined by ISU Clinical Assistant Professor Jen Reader, MHE, RDN.

On the other side of the state, in the Ceremonial Office of the statehouse, Governor Brad Little encouraged all Idahoans to embrace healthy eating and physical activity habits that they can follow throughout the year by approving the same two proclamations. After the signing, Andrea Jeffery, MS, RDN, State Policy Representative for the Idaho Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics, presented the Governor with a bag of Idaho Pardina lentils and a recipe. 

Jeffery, also the ISU-Meridian Nutrition Clinic Coordinator,  explained that the theme for this year’s National Nutrition Month is embracing global cultures. “Lentils are part of the $300 million of Idaho-grown vegetable products exported around the world," said Jeffery. “We asked state officials to Celebrate a World of Flavors by enjoying these protein-packed, nutrient-dense pulses.”

Also attending the Governor's signing were ISU Research Dietitian Barb Gordon, EdD, RDN; ISU MS/Dietetic Interns Madison Ford, Brooke Gregory, and Kassidy Lee; Idaho Food Bank Nutrition Services Manager Megan Seal, RDN; and Clinical Dietitian Darlene Dougherty, RDN.

"I am so proud to see the next generation of RDNs actively spreading the word about the benefits of a healthy lifestyle," said Char Byington, MEd, RDN. Byington is President of the Idaho Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics and the Chair of the ISU Department of Nutrition and Dietetics.

Curious about the lentil recipe that the Governor and other state officials might be soon trying?


Mexican Tostada (adopted from USA Dry Peas, Lentils & Chickpeas)

1/3 cup lentils

1 1/3 cup water

2 Tbsp. vegetable oil

1 lb. boneless and skinless chicken breasts

2/3 cup finely chopped green onion

2 cloves minced garlic

1 (16 oz.) jar salsa of your choice

1 cup drained and rinsed black beans

1 ½ cup chopped bell pepper

1 tsp. chili powder

1 tsp. ground cumin

½ tsp. salt

8 tostadas

Toppings: Shredded cheese, sour cream, guacamole, black olives

  1. In medium saucepan, bring lentils and water to boil, reduce heat, cover and simmer until tender.
  2. In frying pan, cook chicken until internal temperate reaches 165 degrees.
  3. Heat oil in a separate pan and sauté onion and garlic, stirring constantly.
  4. Reduce heat and add lentils, salsa, black beans, and seasoning to the onion and garlic mix.
  5. Shred or cube chicken, add to salsa mixture.
  6. Continue cooking until heated through.
  7. Portion onto 8 tostadas and top with peppers or other toppings.




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