Often times advertising doesn't always encourage you to eat more fruits and vegetables. Plus living a healthier lifestyle can be costly. So Newschannel 6 hit the aisles of a local grocery store with a Registered, Licensed Dietitian to clear up some misconceptions.
Starting with the ever so convenient frozen food aisle. We even got a bit of a reality check with Julia Canavera RD, LD right off the bat.
"It might seem cheap up front, less than a dollar, $0.97, but is it cheap in the long run? Think about the big picture is what I always say."
To explain, Canavera showed us the Banquet Swedish Meatballs. We found calories weren't too bad, fat was a little high, but Canavera said it's the sodium that raises a red flag.
"It's 1020 mg of sodium and the recommendation is 2250 mg a day." So before you throw a frozen dinner in your cart, she recommends flipping over the box and making sure the sodium scores 10% or below.
Another important tip when shopping is to look for things with 5 ingredients or less, or make sure you understand what's on the label, which is surprisingly hard to do.
Now for convenience purposes we wanted to find frozen food that is full of benefits and nutrients, and we did: peas."There are no guessing games here. The sodium is 0 milligrams, it's got good fiber, low calories and it's not expensive," said Canavera.
Between fresh, frozen and canned veggies what's really better for you. "Kind of a trick in nutrition is the deeper the color the more nutrient dense it's going to be,"
Since canned has been heated and treated, she says fresh and frozen are best. "With frozen it's actually been picked at it's peak and then frozen right away so actually it might have more nutrients in it because it has been frozen and locked and sealed nutrients," said Canavera.
It's also easier on your bottom line.
Parents when it comes to snacks for the kiddos we know fast and easy is a top priority.
So for healthy snacking, Canavera said try tossing some Cheerios, dried fruit, or raisins in your little's ones bag when on the go.
The best part is, the dried fruit can be bought in bulk saving you some major cash. "Whole foods again having apples available, bananas, grapes. Keeping those in your bag for your kid at all times, that's a great snacking tool too," said Canavera.