Food drives are common around the holiday season, but the reality is that summertime can be the most challenging for families, especially when school is out.
Ochsner Eat Fit hosts its 9th annual Eat Fit Dine Out June 3-10 to celebrate and support local restaurants, and this year, the Eat Fit team is also encouraging community members to donate to local food banks as part of the Eat Fit Dine Out and Donate Week.
We can donate and do good. We can donate nutritious foods and do even better. Pantry cleanout leftovers certainly don’t sound appealing, but unfortunately this is what’s often donated to local food pantries. In today’s FUELED Wellness + Nutrition, Molly shares key strategies to donating with mindfulness, intention and respect.
Four things to consider:
- No glass – food pantries cannot take products in glass containers
- Avoid jumbo size products – these weigh down the bags and boxes, and often cannot be distributed
- Check the expiration date – food pantries also cannot accept expired foods
- Ask what’s needed! Call your local food bank and ask if they need specific items
And just because it’s nutritious doesn’t mean it has to be pricey – or that it can’t taste good. A few examples include:
- Brown rice, quinoa, whole-wheat pasta, oats
- Beans and lentils – dried or canned (e.g. Blue Runner Creole Cream Style beans with no salt added)
- Canned tuna or salmon
- Natural peanut butter
- Low sodium canned soups
- Canned veggies with no salt added vegetables
- Canned fruits with no sugar added
- Plant-based oils such as olive oil or non-GMO olive oil (in plastic, not glass)
- Low sodium seasoning, dried herbs, spices
For more, check out Molly’s podcast, Food Drive Donations: Make Yours More Than a Pantry Clean Out, featuring Yvette Quantz, Ochsner’s Eat Fit Acadiana Registered Dietitian.
The bottom line: What we give matters. Donate mindfully, with respect and care.
FUELED Wellness + Nutrition is powered by Smoothie King. Learn about Eat Fit at Smoothie King; click here for the full list of Eat Fit options available at Smoothie King, proud sponsor of FUELED Wellness + Nutrition with Molly on WGNO.
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