Are you a ‘Super Chicken’?

The holidays are upon us, but January is right around the corner!  At JTA we are in high anticipation of the opportunity to work with more companies throughout the San Antonio area to provide a practical, affordable approach to employee wellness.

Today I’ve asked Nicki Ortiz, JTA’s Health Promotions Coordinator, to write a guest blog to help whet your appetite for what JTA Wellness can do for you!

What do you think happens when you segregate the top 10% most productive chickens from the rest of the population and give them their very own hen house?  Any idea?  Most quickly answer that production would skyrocket.  However, when William Muir of Purdue University set out to test this hypothesis, the results were quite unexpected.  Most of the prized chickens actually pecked each other to death!  As sad as that may be, the lesson of this experiment has enlightened sociologists and CEOs alike to the highly fallible Super-Chicken Model of company productivity.  Take a moment to think of a well-known, successful company.  Perhaps you picked Google, Apple, or even USAA.  What do they all have in common?  Culture.  Successful companies understand that productivity takes more than obtaining the highest producers and driving their “super chickens” to compete and work harder.  They understand humans have an innate need to feel valued and develop a sense of belonging.  Unifying employees through social collaboratives, such as team building activities and wellness programs, drives workplace culture to a higher level and gives team members the belonging they desire.

As you may have experienced, JTA Wellness is passionate about simplifying wellness though preventative medicine.  However, you might not know that alongside our private practice, we have built a workplace wellness component that offers companies a chance to benefit from our expertise within the walls of their place of business.  The JTA Workplace Wellness Program offers culture building Learn at Lunches, optional wellness challenges, a Wellness Concierge to help you navigate all the components of a successful program, and, most importantly, onsite one-on-one nutrition counseling that can easily be billed to the patients’ insurance.  It is our mission to really understand each company’s environment, culture, and values in order to tailor a program that is unique to them.

Interested in how JTA Wellness can enhance your workplace environment?  Give me a call at 210-545-4422 or send me an email at  Whether you’re a company of 5 or 5,000, we know happy employees are productive employees.


In my opinion, there is nothing better than an easy, hot meal on these cold-weather nights.  Ropa Vieja is an authentic Cuban/Mexican Dish that your family will love!

Ropa Vieja

Cook Time: 7 hrs + 30 min

Serves: 10


3 pounds flank steak, cut into 6 pieces

1/2 teaspoon black pepper

1 tablespoon olive oilropa-vieja-recipe-5

2 medium yellow onions, sliced

1 red or green bell pepper, chopped

1 poblano pepper, chopped

4-5 garlic cloves, minced

2 teaspoons cumin

½ teaspoon allspice

Pinch of cloves

3 bay leaves

½ teaspoon black pepper

¼ teaspoon red chili flakes

2 tablespoons beef base (I used Better than Bouillon)

1 ½ cups water

1 (14.5-ounce) can fire-roasted crushed tomatoes

¼ cup dry white wine

¼ cup fresh cilantro, chopped

Fresh tortillas, optional

Sliced Avocado, optional

Nutrition Information:

240 calories, 9 g fat, 85 mg cholesterol, 980 mg sodium, 6 g carbohydrate, 2 g fiber, 31 g protein


  1. Season meat with pepper, and heat olive oil in a non-stick skillet over medium-high heat. Sear meat on two sides, just until browned.  Transfer meat to crockpot.
  1. Add onions, peppers, garlic, cumin, allspice, cloves, bay leaves, black pepper, red pepper flakes, and beef base to the pot. Cover with water, crushed tomatoes, and white wine.  Turn crockpot to LOW and cook for 7-8 hours.
  1. Transfer meat to cutting board and shred using two forks. Top each portion with cilantro, and serve alongside warm tortillas and sliced avocado, if desired.




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