There’s no doubt about it, fruits and vegetables are essential for a healthy diet. They are packed with phytochemicals, fiber, minerals, and vitamins that protect you from numerous health problems – in short, they keep you feeling your best in body and mind. With summer approaching, your local grocery stores and farmers markets are going to be overflowing with fresh and delicious regionally grown fare, and the temptation is strong to buy everything in sight. But what happens when our over-zealousness to “eat local” turns into a refrigerator that looks like a science experiment gone bad? Eeeeewwww!
We’ve all been there…
The fact is, we’re all guilty of over-buying on occasion. There’s a two-for-one sale you can’t pass up or you had the intention to make fruit jams or pickles but then had a busy week and never got a chance…
How to Get Your Daily Veggies Without Worrying About Waste:
So what can you do to make sure you’re getting all of the recommended daily allowances of vegetables and fruits, but not over-buying fresh produce that you may not be able to consume within a few days or a week? Heading over to the freezer case to pick up frozen fruits and vegetables is certainly a good idea and one that will provide you with all of the excellent nutritional benefits and a much longer shelf-life. In addition to finding frozen vegetables and fruits at your regular grocery store, some farmers markets and CSAs (community supported agriculture programs) also offer their customers farm-fresh frozen choices. It’s certainly something worth investigating if you want your family to be eating sustainably and with minimal food waste all year round.
Simply put, frozen vegetables and fruits are picked at their peak of ripeness (that gives them the best flavor and nutrition) and then quickly blanched in steam or hot water to stop bacteria and other enzymes that cause the food to decay. After that quick blanching process, flash-freezing captures all of the healthy nutrients and locks in that fresh-picked taste. With frozen fruits and veggies, you can simply use as much as you want from the bag, and leave the rest in the freezer for another meal – cutting down on the amount of food you might waste and saving dollars on your food budget!
At Tommy’s Superfoods we like to think that our frozen vegetable medleys are a great way to incorporate environmentally sustainable eating into your regular diet – portion out as much as you need from a package, and then leave the rest for another day. It’ll still have the same great taste and health benefits.
When you take the time to think about how much food you and your family throw out each week, you can then work together to determine solutions for reducing that amount. Making a commitment to eating sustainably isn’t a hard thing to do and in the end it can be a fun – and delicious – routine to begin and maintain.