Tuesday, September 02, 2014

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National Nutrition and National Frozen Food Month

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Albany/HV: National Nutrition and National Frozen Food Month
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Experts said you may want to approach one aisle in your grocery store a little differently, to stay healthy or add some green to your diet. Our Elyse Mickalonis spoke with health professionals who said National Nutrition Month and National Frozen Food Month can go hand-in-hand.

NATIONWIDE -- With spring and swimsuit season approaching, this month may be the best time to revamp your diet.

"Sometimes it’s too easy to buy frozen foods that are really cheap and it doesn’t really help us with weight loss. Even those that may be labeled lower calories or light, they’re not enough to satisfy our metabolism or hunger level,” said Sarah Thompson, Health and Wellness Studies at BU.

March is National Nutrition Month and National Frozen Food Month. Some health experts said a stroll down the frozen food aisle at the supermarket could be healthy if you shop the right way.

"Using frozen foods, using fresh foods, sometimes you can buy organic frozen foods that are less expensive than what you pay to buy fresh foods or vice versa, balancing out what you’re missing from the fresh section of the supermarket,” said Thompson.

Zack Zeller, Health and Wellness Intern at BU, added, "Frozen produce is picked in the field, cleaned extensively several times and flash frozen and packaged up. So, they tend to be very clean and the freezing process helps preserve a lot of the nutrition."

Nutritionists said there are some creative ways to sneak vital nutrients into your diet.
"It’s easy to incorporate fruits and vegetables into our home cooked meals, thinks like homemade soups, homemade stews,” said Thompson.

Rachel Sommers, Fitness and Nutrition Intern at BU, added, "Kids can be picky and sometimes they want the frozen chicken nuggets or something that isn’t healthy. Making food fun is also a benefit for kids. Smoothies are great."

If you want to save money, you may want to use your green thumb and your own freezer.
"A great practice is growing your own fruits and vegetables in the summer months. We have a great climate for fruit, a great climate for a lot of our legumes, tomatoes. And, being able to harvest those in your own home garden and freeze them for later use in the winter months is a great practice,” said Thompson.

Thompson said even with a big demand for gluten and dairy free frozen prepared meals, people should still check the label. Many frozen dinners have high levels of sodium.

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