Friday, June 28, 2013
The journey to eating better is filled with many road bumps.
My biggest challenge this week has been the battle with my fridge and/or local supermarket.
All of the fresh veggies I bought spoiled within 2 days, which had the ripple effect of cancelling out the healthy meals we had planned for this week. Instead, I've had to eat whatever I can find. This means high sodium, junk food, and whatever else is around the house. We'll need to find some alternative backups if we can't count on fresh food anymore.
In a perfect world, I could be growing my own veggies or going to a farmer's market. Unfortunately, my family is going through some tough financial times which has made those options impossible right now. Reliant again on the supermarket. Maybe I can come up with enough to make a small little patio garden, though I've missed when we need to start growing in my area.
Nothing else has gone bad in the fridge which leads me to believe our grocery stores have not been keeping the best goods. It's hard to create meals when you can't trust the food that you are buying will last long enough to make the meal. That's is saddening.
So...this week is a wash in terms of progress. But it's good to know that I won't be able to rely on as much fresh produce as I wanted. We'll have to make some adjustments and use frozen.
Member Comments About This Blog Post
1STATEOFDENIAL: Thanks for the links. I found them surprising. Been buying produce (not everything of course) for a long time without a problem, so I was surprised we were having one now. But those lists are good to know. I think this week was a combination of a lot of factors :)
Printed and posted as a reminder!
1515 days ago
First step: learn how long produce is meant to last
Second step: learn what makes produce spoil faster or last longer
Third step: look for a farmer's market near you to get local fruits and veggies that were picked the same day they're for sale. Also see if there are any community gardens near you that you can buy a small plot for gardening and/or share food items with others for a price. There are also programs where you can have a variety of fresh fruit and veggies delivered to you from a local farmer for a price.
Fourth step: plan to visit the grocery store more than once a week for fresh produce, and buy just enough to get you through until the next visit. This will keep less produce in your house at any time, so you have a better chance of eating it before it goes bad. Also, when you're in the store, take the time to look closely at what you're buying. When fruits and veggies go bad they release gases; so if just 1 item that's going bad is put in a bag or container with other items that are okay, the entire lot will go bad far quicker. So make sure what you're buying is all in good shape.
Fifth step: if you can't get good quality produce, can't get to the grocery store more often, or find that you keep throwing away much of what you buy, then buy more frozen fruits and veggies instead. When they're flash frozen they're just as healthy but will last for a few weeks before getting freezer burn.
Keep in mind that even if you're growing your own fruits and veggies, each area of the country has items that grow best or don't grow at all, so you'll still need to buy other produce to get a variety, as well as to eat during the non-growing months and while yours are growing and ripening. Plus, the crop will mostly become ready all at the same time, so you'd have to be ready to use all that produce at once or prepare them (canning, freezing, drying, etc) to use later. That's a LOT of work for just a few weeks of fresh produce - many of us aren't able to do that.
1515 days ago
When I had to rely on the commissary for food (we lived too far away to realistically shop at the nearest town for groceries), I learned to love the frozen stuff. It is often fresher than "fresh" as it is flash frozen when picked (yes, I know, we have all read that LOL) rather than being picked green and shipped in those funny-gas refrigerator cars. Frustrating but actually cheaper in the long run.
ETA - our commissary had such bad produce, it was bad IN the store, before you even considered buying it. You would pick up a tomato and your thumb would go thru it. yuck!
1515 days ago
Comment edited on: 6/28/2013 6:12:07 PM
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