Tag - food

Food Shelf Life and Storage Tips

    Awareness of the shelf life of food is a twofold concern, balancing food safety and concerns of not being wasteful of money and resources. Americans throw away nearly 40% of the food grown in the country. This amounts to 1,400 calories per person per day, around $400 per person, per year. Shockingly, 31 million tons of food are added to landfills each year! To help balance good health, thriftiness and being a conscientious citizen of the planet, we’ve put together a list of the shelf life of many common foods and best ways to store them to preserve freshness! Shelf Life of Fruits and Vegetables Apples - Refrigerator: 3-5 months Oranges - Room Temp: 3-4 days  Refrigerator: 5-6 weeks Lemons & Limes - Room Temp: 1 week  Refrigerator: 2-5 weeks Grapefruit - Room Temp: 1 weeks  Refrigerator: 2 weeks Stone fruits (apricots, nectarines, peaches, pears, plums) - Refrigerator: 3-5 days Avocados (ripe) - Room Temp: 2-3 days   Refrigerator: 5-10 days Berries and Cherries - Refrigerator: 2-3 days Grapes - Refrigerator: 1-2 weeks Commercially frozen fruits - 1 year Canned Fruits - Refrigerator, unopened: 1-2 years.                          Opened (stored in airtight container): 2-3 days   Asparagus - Refrigerator: 3-5 days Carrots - Refrigerator: 2-4 weeks Green Beans - Refrigerator: 1 week Bell Peppers - Refrigerator: 1-2 weeks Tomatoes - Room Temperature: 2-5 days depending on size and ripeness. Mushrooms - Refrigerator: 1-2 days Commercially frozen vegetables - 8-12 months Canned vegetables - Room Temperature: 1 year             Refrigerator (opened, stored in airtight container): 3-5 days Shelf Life of Meat, Poultry, Fish and Eggs Bacon - Refrigerator: 7 days  Freezer: 1 month Raw Sausage - Refrigerator: 1-2 days  Freezer: 1-2 months Hard Sausage - Refrigerator: 2-3 weeks  Freezer: 1-2 months Ground Beef, Turkey, Chicken, Lamb, Pork - Refrigerator: 1-2 days  Freezer: 3-4 months Steaks/Chops/Roasts (Beef, Pork, Lamb) - Refrigerator: 3-5 days Freezer varies: Steaks - 6-12 months, Chops - 4-6 months, Roasts - 4-12 months Fresh Poultry (whole) - Refrigerator: 1-2 days  Freezer: 1 year Fresh Poultry (pieces) - Refrigerator: 1-2 days  Freezer: 9 months Fish - Refrigerator: 1-2 days  Freezer: Lean fish (cod, haddock, flounder) - 6 months    Fatty Fish (salmon, tuna, mackerel) - 2-3 months Eggs - Refrigerator: Will maintain their best quality for around 3 weeks after the “sell by” or expiration date on the carton. To determine if an egg is still good, you can do a “float test” by putting it in a bowl of waters. If it sinks, it is safe to use. If it floats, it means that gases have built up in it’s shell and it’s not safe for consumption. Pantry Staples ( kept in airtight storage) Flour: 6-8 months Milk (Evaporated, Powdered, Sweetened/Condensed): 1 year Nuts: Shelled 4 months, Unshelled 6 months Peanut Butter: 6-9 months unopened Baking Soda: 2 years Baking Powder: 18 months Rice: White, Jasmine and Basmati - 2 years Brown and Wild - 6 months Pasta: 2 years Oil: Olive - 6 months, Canola - 1 year   Most vinegars are at their best within 2 years but is safe indefinitely. The following pantry staples will keep forever. . . Salt Sugar Honey Real Vanilla Extract
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Eye Health and Nutrition

  In regards to eye health, you have probably heard “Eat your carrots, they’re good for your eyes!” from mom several times throughout childhood. There are several foods that contain vitamins and nutrients essential for eye health. Protect your peepers by consuming more of the following. . . Brightly colored Fruits and Vegetables - Yes, carrots are on the list of top foods for eye health. So are bell peppers, strawberries, pumpkin, corn and canteloupe and other yellow, orange and red fruit and veggies. Carotenoids are the compounds responsible for this bright coloring and help decrease the risk of many eye diseases. The Vitamin C found in many of these fruits and vegetables also lowers your risk of developing cataracts. Mom was right! Carrots and other foods which contain Vitamin A or retinol help your body to synthesize a pigment in your eyes that operates in low light conditions called rhodopsin. Vitamin A deficiency can lead to night blindness. Fish - Cold-water fish such as salmon, tuna, sardines and mackerel are rich in omega-3 fatty acids, which offer protection against dry eyes, macular degeneration and cataracts. Tuna, Salmon, anchovies and trout have high levels of a type of omega 3 called DHA, a fatty acid esential for the health of the retinas but one that our bodies don’t make efficiently. We need to replenish DHA with food rich in this nutrient.  Low levels of DHA are linked to dry eye syndrome. Nuts - Pistachios, walnuts, almonds are also rich in omega-3 fatty acids and also offer healthy doses of vitamin E for eye health. Vitamin E helps protect membranes of cells throughout the body against free radicals, including parts of the eye. Cataracts may be formed due to oxidation in the lens of the eye and Vitamin E offers preventative help. Leafy Greens - Spinach, kale, collard greens and seaweed are rich in luteins, nicknamed the “eye vitamin” as it is incredibly important for eye health. When we consume foods rich in lutein it is deposited in high quantities in the retina. It helps to fight free radical damage caused by exposure to sunlight, reduces eye fatigue and light sensitivity, protects against the development of cataracts. and halts the growth of cancerous cells. Lutein can also be found in those brightly colored fruits and veggies mentioned above! Eggs - Another great source of both lutein and Vitamin A to protect against night blindness, dry eyes and general eye health and function. Legumes - Kidney beans, black-eyed peas and lentils are good sources of zinc which assists the body in absorption of Vitamin A and reduce one’s risk of macular degeneration.
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