There are a few reasons why the summer season is uniquely challenging for the home cook. For one, kids are enjoying a blissful break from their school schedule, waking when they want and embracing an unscheduled life. Then there is the working parent, trying to squeeze as much fun as possible in while still going to work. Keeping up with the summer schedule while still providing nutritious family meals can be a little tough, but with a some thought, it’s a summer breeze.
Happy graduation season! Along with the caps, gowns, speeches (and tears!) are the barbecues and outdoor parties that accompany this time of year. Why not give graduates another chance to build their skills by working the grill at their own party? After all, what better way to say “thank you for supporting me and helping me meet my goals” than by making a perfect burger or other grilled dish for family and friends? So before their next step, let’s enroll graduates in grilling 101.
The meal kit delivery industry has grown significantly since I first wrote about “delivered to your door” recipe subscription companies back in 2015. At the time, I wrote of the two options that were dominating the market. Today there are about 150 meal kit delivery services to choose from. With greater choice has come different approaches to streamlining the plan/shop/prep process for the home cook, as well as questions as to the industry’s future.
“Eating healthy is expensive.” “Nutritious foods cost more.” This is what I sometimes hear when I’m serving in my role as a retail dietitian. It may not surprise you to learn that I disagree and that I show shoppers how to both stick to a budget and still buy for nutritious foods.
In my retail dietitian role, I often run into folks who are trying to move from packaged breads and boxed baking mixes toward developing their own breads and baked goods. As someone who considers herself a decent cook, but not a baker, I always admire the commitment to food science that these individuals are embracing in their home kitchens.
People often tell me that they’re “watching what they eat” and “trying not to over do it,” but they aren’t necessarily sure how to quantify just what that means for a given meal or day. These individuals don’t realize it, but the reason they can’t quantify what a serving should be is because they don’t know what it it’s supposed to be. Most of us were never taught what a proper serving is. Therefore, each of us needs to learn serving guidelines and how many of those servings should be enjoyed in a day.
As a retail dietitian, I work with all my customers, including my littlest shoppers. These are the guests that are often the most excited to see what nutritious message—and of course snack—I’m able to share with them. Even the very youngest, who remind me of their age by holding their three or four small fingers chat with me and absorb my carefully crafted guidance. These little friends who are quick to show me that they know how to count to three are most excited when I show them the little green cartoon that can also only count to three.
A typical grocery store has about 40,000-50,000 products in it. That’s a lot of food, a lot for your eyes to take in, and a lot for you to choose from. Add to it that as a shopper, you are likely shopping with a “list of wants” right along with your grocery list. You are likely looking for foods that are lower in sodium, rich in heart-healthy fat, possibly with fewer artificial ingredients, and that offer overall beneficial nutrition for you and your family. But all those products…and all those decisions to make. Wouldn’t it be nice if you had a shopping partner by your side to help you “weed out” the foods that aren’t aligned with your health goals or not as healthy as they appear to be? Welcome to Guiding Stars, the BFF that helps you do just that.