Today’s Website Wednesday is one I just came across a year or so ago. It’s become a go-to resource for me to find affordable, healthy food choices and recipes for my patients. I think you’ll like it too--Mealtime.org from the Canned Food Alliance.
Wait, canned food? Isn’t that unhealthy? Indeed, canned food might make you think of highly processed items. And while there are plenty of unhealthy canned items, fruits and vegetables aren’t. In addition to being affordable and easy to find, canned fruits and vegetables can be nutritional powerhouses. They also have a very long shelf life. Don’t believe me? Keep reading.
Canned peaches? They’re higher in Vitamin C and Folate than fresh peaches. Canned tomatoes? One serving of canned tomatoes provides three times as much lycopene as fresh tomatoes, an important cancer-fighting carotenoid. Canned salmon? It has significantly more calcium than fresh salmon. And it’s not just nutrition. Canned fruits and vegetables are significantly less expensive than fresh, particularly when that fruit or vegetable isn’t in season. A can of pinto beans (when the cost of preparation is figured in) is $1 less per serving than soaking your beans. Also, beans aren’t just a source of fiber; they have wonderful meatless protein as well.
But what about the sodium and sugar in canned fruits and vegetables? Rinsing canned vegetables removes about half the sodium. You can also shop specifically for low sodium or no-salt-added versions of your favorite items. See this colorful graphic for other helpful tips to reduce sodium in your canned vegetables. When it comes to canned fruits, think “in water” or “in its own juice” instead of syrup. You’ll reduce the sugar content significantly.
Mealtime.org has a plethora of recipes, menu ideas (I love the “just add one” series), and a guide to storage and shelf life for canned food.
Spend some time on Mealtime.org today, and you’ll never think of canned fruits and vegetables the same way again!