June 9, 2014

Now every Monday: Saint Anne’s Hospital launches third annual weekly Farmers Market

Market features fresh, locally grown produce from Silverbrook Farm in Dartmouth and unique partnership with hospital’s Diabetes Education Program

Fall River, MA – ’Tis the season to be enjoying fresh, locally grown produce … and what better way is there to obtain the best than by visiting a local farmers market?

Now through Monday, October 27, Saint Anne’s Hospital is partnering for the third year with Silverbrook Farm of Dartmouth in offering a weekly farmers market at the corner of Middle and South Main streets at its main campus in Fall River.

With its 350-year history, Silverbrook Farm is one of the oldest operating farms in Massachusetts. Its produce is grown using sustainable methods, meaning no herbicides or pesticides are used.

Fostering community health through healthy eating

In addition to providing great produce and related products for the general community, Saint Anne’s farmers market offers a unique opportunity for some of its patients with diabetes.

For the second year, the hospital’s Community Health Program, in partnership with the hospital’s Diabetes Education Program, is offering the Steward Farmers Market “Steward Bucks” program for high-risk patients with diabetes. Weekly vouchers are offered free of charge to select patients enrolled in the hospital’s diabetes education program for use at the Farmers Market. Patients are evaluated at intervals during the market season.

“Last year’s program showed that a coordinated approach to healthy eating can have a positive impact on people with diabetes,” said Rose Marie Couto, RN, CDE, a certified diabetes educator at Saint Anne’s. “By using target goals established by the American Diabetes Association (ADA), and making produce and related recipes available, we helped a number of patients reap the benefits of healthy eating.”

Some of the target goals included improvements in weight, blood pressure, and A1c, which provides a picture of a person’s average blood glucose (blood sugar) control for the past two to three months.

Results for patients with diabetes who participated regularly in the Farmers Market program were encouraging. Here’s a snapshot of patients' results in 2013:


American Diabetes Association target goals

SAH patients’ average at start(May 2013)

SAH patients’ average at completion(October 2013)


A1c (blood glucose)

7% or lower






247.8 lbs

241 lbs


Blood pressure

140/80 or lower





But that’s not all

In addition to offering locally grown produce and locally made products, Saint Anne's will provide space at the market for community partners to offer information about programs and services aimed at promoting healthy lifestyles. The hospital’s food and nutrition staff also will offer free recipes and demonstrations and samples of healthy food offerings using seasonal ingredients sold at the market.

“Strawberries are one of the earliest products,” said Couto. “Strawberries contain great nutrients, such as Vitamin C, fiber, antioxidants, and more.”

Bonus: See recipe below for “Berry-Topped Cheesecake,” a delicious and diabetes-friendly recipe that uses strawberries and other seasonal fruits that will be available at this year's market.

“Market Mondays” at Saint Anne’s Hospital

The market will be open on Mondays through October 27, from 11:30 a.m. to 4 p.m., near the hospital’s main entrance at the corner of South Main and Middle streets. Free valet parking is available at the entrance.

Accepted forms of payment include cash, check, debit and credit cards, SNAP, and "Steward Bucks" for qualified patients enrolled in the hospital’s diabetes education program. 


Berry-Topped Cheesecake

1½ cups small pretzel twists (2 ounces; about 33)
2 tablespoons sliced almonds, toasted
3 tablespoons butter, melted
1/3 cup water
1 envelope unflavored gelatin
1½ 8-ounce tub light cream cheese, softened
1 8-ounce carton light dairy sour cream
¼ cup powdered sugar
½ teaspoon almond extract
½ 8-ounce container frozen light whipped dessert topping, thawed
1 cup quartered or halved fresh strawberries
1 cup fresh blackberries or blueberries

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.

For crust: In a food processor, combine pretzels and sliced almonds; cover and process until finely crushed. Add butter; cover and process until combined. Press pretzel mixture on the bottom of an 8- or 9-inch springform pan. Bake for 8 to 10 minutes or until lightly browned. Cool on a wire rack.

For filling: Place the water in a small saucepan; sprinkle with gelatin (do not stir). Let stand for 5 minutes to soften. Cook and stir over low heat until gelatin dissolves; set aside to cool slightly.

In a large bowl, combine cream cheese, sour cream, powdered sugar, and almond extract; beat with an electric mixer on medium speed until smooth. Add gelatin mixture; beat until combined. Fold in whipped topping.

Spread half of the filling evenly over cooled crust. Top with half of the strawberries and half of the blackberries. Spread the remaining cream cheese mixture over berries. Cover and chill cheesecake for 4 to 24 hours or until set. Run a long sharp knife around edge of cheesecake to loosen; remove side of pan. Cut cheesecake into wedges. Top each serving with some of the remaining strawberries and blackberries.

Servings per recipe: 12

Nutrition facts per serving
176 calories
11 g total fat (7 g saturated fat)
28 mg cholesterol
236 mg sodium
14 g carbohydrate (1 g fiber, 7 g sugars)
6 g protein