Did you know that half of all food produced in the United States is wasted every year? And, that households are the largest contributors to food waste? At HealthBarn USA, we like to get creative and make sure that we are getting the most out of our fruits and veggies so that nothing gets wasted for us or the planet!
We’re going to share some food for thought and simple tips to cut down the food waste in your home!
1) Eggs are a household staple for a reason. Not only are they a perfect protein containing all the amino acids your body needs, they also contain important nutrients such as choline and vitamin D.
What to Do with the Shells? Much like coffee grinds and tea bags, egg shells are an excellent addition to compost piles as the calcium in their shells adds a nutritional boost to the soil. Compost in your backyard or start a worm bin at home — compost is cool!
2) Fresh fruits and vegetables are a great way for your body to get vitamins, nutrients, and fiber that it needs! Sometimes a few items from the weekly haul don’t make it get eaten and begin to spoil.
What to do? While these items can be composted, you can also prevent your fruits and vegetables from spoiling by freezing them or adding them to smoothies! Speaking of freezing… buy frozen varieties. They are picked at their peak ripeness and are packed with just as many, if not more, nutrients than fresh ones.
3) Broccoli the champion vegetable is packed with over 100% of your daily needs of vitamins K and C, as well as ample amounts of folate and fiber. These nutrients help keep your immune and digestive systems running smoothly so you can feel your best everyday!
What to do with the Stems? Most recipes call for only using the heads of broccoli, but did you know that you can use the stems, too! The stems are also full of nutrients and can be used in stocks and soups, as well as stir fry’s and slaws.
Tips to cut down on food waste:
Make a list of all of the foods you’ll need before shopping
Buy items only as you need them
Buy only a few items at a time
Use all parts of the plant/animal
Save veggie scraps for stocks or soups
Get creative with leftovers
Dedicate one night per week to creating a meal using anything that may spoil in the fridge (kids love this idea!)
Remember first in first out
Stacey Antine, MS, RDN, author, Appetite for Life, founder, HealthBarn USA, director, HealthBarn Foundation, and recognized as top 10 dietitians nationally by Today’s Dietitian magazine for her work with HealthBarn USA.