Healthy Living Blog

Produce for Kids Gives Hope at Meijer

Tina Miller, MS RD Meijer Health Living Advisor, www.meijerhealthyliving.com

Contributing author:  Liz Dempsey, Dietetic Intern, Michigan State University

Produce for Kids is an organization that encourages healthy eating among families through providing simple, healthy meal solutions and resources for parents. All the while, they raise funds for local children’s non-profit organizations. In total, over $3.7 million dollars have beenraised to benefit kids. Last year Produce for Kids partnered with Meijer in their Get Healthy, Give Hope campaign to help raise money for local Children’s Miracle Network Hospitals. Thanks to Meijer shoppers, Meijer has been able to help raise over $526,000.

Once again, Meijer and Produce for Kids are teaming up to host the second annual Get Healthy Give Hope campaign from May 27th through June 23rd. Shoppers can contribute to this cause and support local children’s hospitals through purchasing produce at their local Meijer. The more produce in the shoppers’ cart, the more hope they can give to children in the area. 

By supporting this campaign you will:

  • Improve the nutrition of your family through incorporating produce rich recipes, because families that include fresh produce into their meals tend to eat healthier overall.
  • Receive collectable Produce for Kids’ Ideal Meals™ offered by Meijer. Ideal Meals™ are quick yet healthy meal ideas which are chef created and nutritionist approved offering solutions for breakfast, lunch, dinner and dessert all featuring fresh fruits and veggies as main ingredients. These are totally free and can be found in the produce department!
  • Help give hope to children in the area through aiding the donation to Children’s Miracle Network Hospitals. In combination with produce suppliers, Meijer will make this donation based on shoppers’ produce investment.

When you purchase produce at Meijer from the following companies a donation will be made to your local Children’s Miracle Network Hospital:

                Dole Food Company; Grower Direct California Cherries; HMC Farms, Fowler Packing Company & SunWest Fruit Company-California Peaches, Plums and Nectarines; Marzetti Company- Marzetti Refrigerated Salad Dressings; Mastronardi Produce- SUNSET Campari Brand Cocktail Tomatoes; NatureSweet Vine Ripened Cherry Tomatoes; Pero Family Farms Mini Sweet Peppers, Snipped Green Beans and Freshwrap Organic Vegetables; Potandon Produce- Green Giant Fresh Klondike Rose & Red Potatoes, Shuman Produce- RealSweet Vidalia Onions; WellPict Berries Strawberries; Westmoreland Sales – TopLine Mini Cucumbers & Tomatoes on the Vine.

Produce Health Benefits

Fruits and vegetables provide the body with vitamins, minerals and other natural substances that help to protect us from chronic diseases. Through consuming diets rich in fresh produce you supply your body with the following essential nutrients:

  • Fiber
    • Diets rich in dietary fiber have been shown to have numerous beneficial effects including a decreased risk for heart disease. It keeps the body clean and running smoothly!
    • Excellent vegetable sources: navy beans, kidney beans, black beans, lentils, artichokes, split peas, chick peas and black eyed peas
    • Potassium
      • Potassium rich diets can help to maintain normal blood pressure levels.
      • Great produce sources are: bananas, oranges, apricots, avocadoes, sweet potatoes, white potatoes, tomatoes, cooked greens, carrots and prunes
      • Vitamin A
        • Vitamin A helps to keep eyes and skin healthy in addition to preventing infections.
        • Best fruit and veggie sources: sweet potatoes, pumpkin, carrots, spinach, turnip greens, mustard greens, collard greens, kale, winter squash, cantaloupe, red peppers, Chinese cabbage
        • Vitamin C
          • Vitamin C helps heal cuts and wounds as well as protecting gums and teeth.
          • Excellent sources include: red and green peppers, kiwi, strawberries, sweet potatoes, kale cantaloupe, broccoli, pineapple, Brussels sprouts, oranges, mangoes and cauliflower

Produce Rich Recipes- Kid Friendly!

 

Carrot & Cranberry Salad

Serves 4

Ingredients:

1 Napa Cabbage, leaves washed, the ribs removed and julienne

3 Navel Oranges (1 juiced, the others segmented)

2 Medium sized carrots, grated

1/4 cup of cranberries or golden raisins

¼ cup chopped walnuts

Directions:

  1. Toss all of the above in a salad bowl and allow to marinate in the fridge for 10-15 minutes.
  2. Serve in small bowls, ramekins or cups or old fashioned tumblers (this way it is easier to drink the leftover orange/carrot juice)

Nutrition Information (per serving): Calories 189, Fat 5.8 g, Cholesterol 0 mg, Sodium 62mg, Carbohydrate33 g,  Fiber 9 g, Protein 5.5 g. Provides 82% DV for Vitamin A, 213% DV for Vitamin C

Recipe adapted from www.blog.superhealthykids.com

 

Guacamole Tomato Boats

Serves 4

Ingredients:

4 medium tomatoes on the vine

1 cup guacamole

1 cup salsa

½ cup cheddar cheese

 

Directions:

  1. Slice the top of each tomato and carefully scoop out the inside.
  2.  Make sure to not puncture the bottom.
  3.  Fill each tomato with guacamole, then salsa, and garnish with cheddar cheese.
  4. Spray baking sheet with Meijer non-stick cooking spray.
  5. Bake for about 5 to 7 minutes until the cheese melts.

Nutrition Information (per serving): Calories 220, Fat 10 g, Cholesterol  15 mg, Sodium 540mg, Carbohydrate16 g,  Fiber 6 g, Protein 7.5 g. Provides 26% DV for Vitamin A, 30% DV for Potassium.

Recipe adapted from Produce for Kids

 

Taco Pitas

Serves 2

¼ cup corn

¼ cup black beans

¼ cup tomatoes, chopped

¼ cup green onions, chopped

¼ cup avocados, chopped

2 tsp taco seasoning

¼ cup lettuce, chopped

1 Whole wheat pita, cut in half

Directions:

  1. Mix all ingredients (except lettuce and pitas) in a bowl.
  2. Scoop into pitas when preparing lunch.

Nutrition Information (per serving): Calories 170, Fat 4 g, Cholesterol  0 mg, Sodium 324 mg, Carbohydrate29  g,  Fiber 7 g, Protein 6 g. Provides 20% DV for Vitamin C, 23% DV for Potassium.

Recipe adapted from www.blog.superhealthykids.com