My life and work schedule has gotten so busy that I have to remind myself to eat breakfast. I love making smoothies in my Vitamix, it’s quick, easy and instead of adding ice cubes, I use frozen berries. It’s very filling and keeps me energized until my morning snack or lunch. Did you know that frozen foods are healthy and cost effective? This week registered dietitian and Women’s Health magazine contributor, Keri Glassman joined me for an interview to discuss how frozen fruits and vegetables are just as healthy or even more nutrient rich than fresh fruits and vegetables, she even shared some of her favorite meal ideas too!
Candace Rose: With fall upon us and the busy holiday season on its way, how can we feed our families wholesome food that is also cost effective?
Keri Glassman: “Well, frozen food is a great way to do that. I keep my freezer stocked with lots of frozen food for those busy, busy hectic days, but when I want to make sure that I don’t miss out on giving my kids any certain nutrients. When you think of frozen foods, you want to think of natures pause button being pressed. Things like fruits and vegetables, when they are picked at peak ripeness, they have the most amount of nutrients. So they’re picked at peak ripeness, they’re flash frozen and sometimes they even have more nutrients than their fresh counterparts in the grocery store because those fresh (lets say) berries or something have been sitting there for a while. It’s also a very convenient way to keep foods on hand. It’s a cost effective way to keep these foods on hand to meet nutrient needs, to bridge the gap, to even supplement a homemade meal you might be making.”
Candace Rose: Do you have any suggestions on how we can customize dishes with frozen foods?
Keri Glassman: “Absolutely. Well, first of all, I always give my kids a smoothie every morning, so something like making a smoothie and having the frozen berries on hand, that’s always that’s something that is always there and ready to go. They’re getting their antioxidants, they’re getting their fiber. I throw that in the smoothie for them in the morning.
You can even get oatmeal in the freezer section these days, if you want to throw it in in the microwave and run out the door, because we all know we have those mornings like that.
Even if you want to customize your meal a little bit, lets say you’ve prepared a wonderful chicken dish the night before and you want to use those leftovers, and you don’t want to waste the chicken but you want to have a different dish the next night, you can couple that with rice, beans and corn. Now you have a totally different dish and you can even add some frozen broccoli. You’re getting your cruciferous vegetables in, lots of antioxidants there. You’re using your leftover chicken, you’re keeping cost down and you’re satisfying a different craving, a different taste and desire.”
Candace Rose: With cold and flu season nearly upon us are there any specific fruits and vegetables that we should be adding to our diet?
Keri Glassman: “You want all fruits and vegetables. You want to make sure that you’re getting a lot of them. The cruciferous vegetables – broccoli, cauliflower, you really want to make sure you get those in. Berries (that I already mentioned as well) – blueberries, raspberries, strawberries, lots of antioxidants.
Of course, it’s citrus season coming up. You want to make sure you get citrus in for that vitamin C for cold season as well.”
Candace Rose: Do you have any additional tips or information you’d like to share with us?
Keri Glassman: “You can check out HowFreshStaysFresh.com for lots more information. Just make sure to check out the freezer aisle, there’s lots of options for all different health and lifestyle needs.”