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Fruit powers nurses' endless summer

A few years ago, when Linda Simmons' husband was diagnosed with diabetes and 50 pounds overweight, the two of them made a big shift together. 

Simmons, 58, also changed professions. After working many years as a bookkeeper, she went back to school at Linfield and is in the BSN to RN program. She's been a nurse for two years but with Legacy just since June 2015 and works in the busy med/surg unit at Legacy Emanuel.

The pair made big changes in their eating and love taking advantage of all the many farms in the area. Simmons said, "We start out in April with the strawberries and we ended (in November) with filberts and walnuts."  

She roasts the filberts with olive oil on a cookie sheet and makes her own smoothies and yogurt.

But Simmons also gets a hand with the cooking from her husband who takes care of dinner each night as she balances a busy work and school schedule.

She says she thinks eating healthy is really important and she believes it "projects a good image" to her patients.

Simmons says when she thinks of good health, she is reminded of her personal responsibility. 

“Physicians and other advisers help of course, but I can't just expect them to wave a magic wand and keep me healthy without doing most of the work myself."

"Physicians and other advisers help of course, but I can't just expect them to wave a magic wand and keep me healthy without doing most of the work myself" -- Linda Simmons

Saddled with hereditary high cholesterol, she's done what she can to drop her levels by 100 points with diet and exercise.

"I do a lot of walking to stay in shape and keep my weight at optimum and take a minimal dose of statin," she said.

And by freezing her bounty, Simmons has a taste of summer all winter long.

Would you like to share your healthy habits in social media with us? Try these hash tags: #HealthySelfie and #LivingMyLegacy.