Eat for health with frozen meals

Posted Aug. 14, 2013, at 9:41 a.m.

Senior Beat

by Carol Higgins Taylor

Eastern Area Agency on Aging

 

I was rummaging around my freezer the other day looking for something healthy and delicious. I found waffles and ice cream. I started thinking about how nice it would be to go to the freezer and choose from a variety of highly nutritious, delicious meals.

I found the answer to my lunch dilemma at work. Eastern Area Agency on Aging has a great program, 3-D Catering, that can change the way you (and I) eat and even the way we think about meals.

Now 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  flies in the face of trying to be healthy.

EAAA’s 3D Catering provides the convenience of a frozen dinner but with much lower sodium and fat readings for most of the entrees than you’ll find on other frozen meals. 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, 3D 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 milligrams, 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 milligrams.

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, as in a restaurant meal. I did a little research and found that some restaurants meals have upwards of 3,500 milligrams 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 five-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. I know my home freezer is going to look much more appealing.

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 eaaa.org.

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