Spring is the season of beauty and rejuvenation and the perfect time to start anew. Local nutrition expert Melissa Herrmann Dierks says we should seize the symbolism of the season – sunshine, warm weather and vibrant flowers – and take that motivation to begin refreshing everything around you…most of all, your refrigerator!
Here are a few quick steps to refresh your fridge:
▪ Keep or toss? Do a careful check of expiration and best by dates and discard expired and/or spoiled foods. Clean refrigerator and freezer shelves, bins and doors.
▪ Make sense of portions. Individual portions can also help control calories with some of your favorites such as mini cans of soda or a 100 calorie ice cream cup.
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▪ Keep it simple. Stock individual serving-options to promote convenient, nourishing eating on the run. Individual bags of baby carrots, hummus cups, fruit cups, low fat cheese sticks, yogurt cups and single serving cottage cheese cups allow you to reach in and grab foods that you can take with you to eat at work or on the run.
▪ Choose low fat dairy choices to help manage weight. Skim or 1% milk is recommended for those over the age of 2, and 2% cheeses and cheese with less than 3 grams of fat per ounce help control fat and calorie intake.
▪ Opt for buttery spreads with zero transfat, or use small amounts of real butter if preferred, and add low fat yogurt choices. Include egg substitutes along with whole eggs, fresh fish and lean meats for protein.
▪ Store fresh strawberries with their green hats on, and wash just prior to eating. Use the crisper drawer for snacks that kids can reach, such as low fat puddings and cheese sticks, 100% juice boxes, fresh fruits, low fat lunch meats and yogurt.
Melissa Herrmann Dierks RDN, LDN, CDE is owner of www.supermarketsavvy.com, a healthy shopping & nutrition consulting company based in Huntersville, NC. Melissa is a consultant to The Coca-Cola Company and provides practical nutrition information on behalf of the Company. All opinions expressed are her own.