What does “food insecurity” mean? It means people or households are limited in their resources to buy food. It can also mean they’re running out of food, cutting the quality of their food, eating unbalanced meals and maybe even skipping meals. Food insecurity is closely linked with high rates of obesity, diabetes and other health problems, and this is partly due to the lack of choices supplied by food pantries. As families depend on donated foods more and more for a greater share of their nutritional needs, the quality of those foods becomes more important. Local research has shown that one-third of all donated pantry food is of low nutritional value, damaged or very outdated.
Guess who’s coming to your holiday dinner?
Iowa State University reports that not only do family meals offer children a chance to learn about their family’s values and culture, but that children who eat with their families eat more fruits, vegetables and whole grains. Even better? Teens who eat with their families are less likely to smoke, drink and use drugs, according to the research.
In summer 2016, the Sheboygan Area School District approved eliminating reduced- price meal fees for families. This means all students under 185 percent of the poverty level now receive free lunches and breakfasts where available.
“Backyard gardening can inspire you to take an interest in the origins of your food and make better choices about what you put on your plate. When you grow your own food, you savor it more because of the effort it took to get to the table.” That’s according to Dr. Helen Delichatsios of Massachusetts General Hospital. If you planted a garden and are thinking about harvesting and storage, this information is for you, or it may inspire you to grow a garden next year. When it comes to harvest time, each crop truly has a very unique set of practices. Some crops should be left out for a frost, while others should be brought in when the nighttime temperatures approach 50 degrees. An acronym for this time of year to help explain fall harvest is appropriately named “THIS,” which stands for temperature, heat, in the soil and sweeten.
We have all probably heard at one time or another to “eat your fruits and vegetables.” Even the USDA Dietary Guidelines remind us to make half of our plate fruits and vegetables. Why is this so important?
The good food revolution encourages people to eat local. Choosing local, fresh food offers benefits to our health, the environment and our future.
Food insecurity is real and exists in Sheboygan County.
That’s the question I often ask people looking to join the Nourish world in some capacity. Frankly, I am asking if you think about food. There is no right answer — only that you have one.
Are you one of those people who vows to “eat more fresh veggies this year?”