April 30, 2020
The food we eat: For many, a passion to enjoy. For some, a necessity that is lacking.
Grocery shopping and meal planning during social distancing.
While public safety measures have affected your normal routines, preparing food you enjoy and eating regular meals is an important contributor to your well-being. Now is a great time to try new recipes you’ve been saving!
There is a lot of nutritional information, sometimes conflicting, online. The Dietitians of Canada offers credible, evidence-based information that can help you discern good information from bad. Below are some helpful tips and resources for grocery shopping and the time spent in your kitchen.
1. Plan ahead.
Take note of retail operations, such as specific shopping hours for seniors and immunocompromised individuals, as well as contactless pick-up and delivery options. Use a list and brainstorm versatile dishes that you could make with limited ingredients (i.e. spaghetti, soups and casseroles) to minimize shopping time.
2. Think fresh, frozen, canned and dried.
The nutritional value of fruits and vegetables is similar whether fresh, frozen or canned. Consider the shelf life that is best and the storage space that you have available. When buying canned fruits and vegetables, look for fruit packed in water and vegetables with low sodium. Dried goods such as beans and lentils are excellent sources of nutrients and store well – check out Pulse Canada for preparation tips and recipes.
3. Food safety during the COVID-19 pandemic.
There is no evidence that COVID-19 is spread through food, or eating or touching produce. When preparing fresh fruits and vegetables, wash or scrub them under cold, running, potable tap water prior to consumption. Visit the Government of Canada’s page about food safety practices during the COVID-19 pandemic.
4. Know what resources are available near you.
Experiences of food insecurity are likely rising (not having access to food regularly due to financial constraints). Memorial University's food bank is currently closed, but Food First NL has prepared a spreadsheet of resources that are available and is updating the document weekly.
The Well-being Task Force
Faculty of Medicine