Many Presentations at May Coffee and a Chat

Submitted by:
Connie Beaudry,
Resource Coordinator

May 2024 was a busy month for the Coffee and A Chat presenters, Birch River and Benito hosted Jennie Cowan and Deb Schulz, Swan River hosted Deb Schulz, Ryan Stupak, Juanita Garcia and Romy Russell.

Jennie Cowan is a registered dietitian with Prairie Mountain Health and an expert on Diabetes and the medications and devices used to mitigate this disease.
– Type 1 is an auto immune disease that is a type of a hormone disorder.
– Type ll is described as cells in muscle, fat, and the liver become resistant to insulin, leading to insufficient sugar uptake. The pancreas can’t produce enough insulin to maintain healthy blood sugar levels. Being overweight and inactive are contributing factors.

Kidney damage (dialysis)and heart disease is a side effect of Diabetes. Food is not the cause of Diabetes, but a healthy diet is always good for the body as a whole. There are new medications that can protect the heart, liver and hormones. There are newer continuous monitoring systems that enhance a person’s lifestyle. Statistics are showing there is an increase of childhood diabetes in Manitoba, lucky for us there is a good research center in Winnipeg, and it is said that Manitoba has good coverage. Check with your Medical Doctor or Pharmacist to see if your prescription medications for your diabetes is covered under the new policies. For more information about diabetes please contact: Jennie Cowan, RD CDE CBE, by phone: (204) 734-6637 or email:

Deb Schulz has reminded us that summer heat waves and medications may increase your risk of heat stroke, check with your Medical Doctor or Pharmacist to see how to safely “do summer”. Statistics show 1 in 3 adults are lonely worldwide. Sometimes we are our own worst enemies to loneliness. Bring a new participant to Coffee and a Chat and put your name in for a prize. Find humour to make a bad day better/brighter, think of something from the past that made you laugh out loud. Keep your memories alive by sharing with friends and family. Never be afraid to call someone who you haven’t talked to for years, you will find that that the connection will be good for you and for the other person also. Practice gratitude. If you find you are stressed and can’t “bear” to go out, try to unload that thing that you have no control over, tell someone you are not available to help with their problems. Sharing the problems of others can sometimes be overwhelming. When you are trying to be healthy and active try to clean that room, say you are sorry, volunteer, join a united cause or sport or craft group. If you are having difficulties connecting with someone or a group in your community, give Services to Seniors a call at 204-734-5707 and we will do our best to connect you.

Ryan Stupak of Valley Greenhouse is a wealth of plant information. He says to feel free to stop by the greenhouse that was formerly Eggie’s Greenhouse to view what they have to offer and of course to ask questions about plants. I think he is very passionate about plants. We learned the difference between the Christmas, Easter and Thanksgiving cactus plants, as well as how to fertilize and keep moisture in our plants
during the winter. Remember nitrogen make leaves not flowers, so purchase fertilizer for the type of plant you have.

Juanita Garcia and Romy Russell stress along with Deb that we should all aim to do 150 minutes a week of exercise. Exercise equals more blood flow which in turn equals mental alertness. Muscle strengthening activities using major muscles at least twice a week and with activities that challenge balance. We should aim for 7-8 hours of good quality sleep daily. We should limit sedentary behaviour time to 8 hours or less, taking a break every hour for 5 minutes. Difficult this season for farmers, truck drivers and office workers. But do your best to take a short walk outside of the tractor, truck and if in the office walk to the water cooler or printer or further to the post office, your health will be better for it. You can find more information at

Juanita is a student working with Romy for a few weeks. She is very good at her job and we wish her continued success with her education. Juanita gave us some exercises and stretches we can do at home with only an exercise band. The guideline is to start slow with less sets and repetitions 2 to 3 times per week and increase only when you feel your body is not challenged any longer. The goal is to gradually increase
the handout of 9 exercises/stretches, up to 30 repetitions a day, 2-3 times a week. If you would like to have the handout, you can contact Romy directly at 204-734-4167 or stop by the Services to Seniors office at 126-6 th Ave. North.

Thank you for everyone who has attended our sessions. Benito will be on a summer break and will resume in September. Birch River and Swan River will continue in June with Deb Schulz with Elder Abuse Awareness activities, and Katie Kroeker, Registered Dietitian will talk about Food Safety and how to store food and leftovers. We remind everyone about the E.R.I.Kits that can be pickup up at the Ambulance Station, Swan Valley Primary Health Care Clinic, Senior Centers and the Services to Seniors in Swan River.

Have a great summer, see you June 25th or 27th.