Put variety into your menu with catered meals from EAAA

Posted Feb. 19, 2013, at 2:04 p.m.

Senior Beat

by Carol Higgins Taylor

Eastern Area Agency on Aging

Variety is the spice of life. And when it comes to food, variety is actually healthier. Imagine going to the freezer and choosing from a delicious assortment of nutritious, ready to heat meals each day. Even if you love to cook, most recipes make so much that you are forced to eat it for a week or freeze the leftovers.

Eastern Area Agency on Aging has a wonderful program that fits the bill for people who like options, quality ingredients and perfect portions.  EAAA offers 3D Catering, which can change the way you eat and even the way you think about your meals.

We are all familiar with frozen dinners and have probably eaten hundreds of them in our lifetimes. While they are convenient, they often leave much to be desired nutritionally. Check the labels. Typically you will find high sodium and high fat contents which kind of flies in the face of trying to be healthy.

You will not have that worry with 3D Catering. Every entree still has the convenience of a frozen meal but most have much lower sodium and fat readings than other brands. There are about 60 different meals in rotation, each is delicious and well-prepared but just as important each one is nutritionally sound. Every meal has been approved by a registered dietitian and meets a full one-third of the recommended daily allowance of nutrients.

Just look at the meals you could be eating: Tender turkey dinners with red skinned mashed potatoes, succulent beef pot pie, juicy ham and creamy macaroni and cheese, roasted pork loin with rosemary cream sauce and roasted red-skinned potatoes, rich chicken Alfredo with penne pasta, savory meatloaf with tomato gravy and mashed potato and beef stew to name a few.

So if you’d love to have a full-course meal every day including dessert without having to prepare it yourself and you like the convenience of frozen meals but want to eat healthier food, 3-D Catering is for you.

We pride ourselves on the meals we serve and pay close attention to quality, both in taste and nutrition. Did you know that the latest nutritional guidelines have reduced the amount of           sodium a person should have in a day to 2,300 mg, according to the U.S. Department of Agriculture in its book, “Dietary Guidelines for Americans 2010.” Now, here’s the kicker. For adults aged 51 and older, the sodium requirement has been reduced to 1,500 mg.

I tell you this because it is important information to have but also because you may find these meals are not quite as seasoned as you’re used to. For instance, a typical chain restaurant meal has a tremendous amount of salt. I did a little research and found that some restaurants meals have upwards of 3,500 mg of sodium. It’s scary out there.

Now, for the best part. You can purchase five meals, five desserts, five rolls, five pats of butter and a quart of milk for $20. You are reading that right. $20 has never gone so far.

There are absolutely no restrictions on who may purchase these meal packs. There are no age requirements and no income guidelines. All you need is a desire to have a good meal.

And aside from tasting good, they are feel good meals as well. This business supports Meals on Wheels. Every time you have a 3-D Catering lunch, you are helping a senior get lunch too.

If you would like to purchase a 5-pack of delicious meals, call EAAA. The packs are not made to order but if you are allergic to fish, for example, we won’t send you fish. Our personal testers have loved all the varieties and we think you will too.

Go to www.eaaa.org and click on 3D Catering to view the five-day menu options.

Carol Higgins Taylor is director of communications at Eastern Area Agency on Aging. For information on EAAA, call 941-2865, toll-free 800-432-7812, or visit http://www.EAAA.org.

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