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news News Tuesday, March 31, 2020 Tuesday, March 31, 2020 5:46 PM - Tuesday, March 31, 2020 5:46 PM

Seven tips for healthier meals at home during coronavirus outbreak

From Shriners Hospitals clinical dietitian

Seven tips for healthier meals at home during coronavirus outbreak

Tips provided by Pamela Patt, MS, RDN, CSP, LDN, CSNC, clinical dietician and director of nutrition services at the Chicago Shriners Hospital:

  1. Whole wheat pasta and canned beans are very healthy sources of fiber and protein. You can also buy a variety of pastas to give you additional protein: lentil pasta, chickpea, black bean or even quinoa pastas.
  2. Eat your vegetables. Patt suggests buying frozen vegetables because those last much longer. Also pick up frozen or canned fruit in their own juice to supplement your fresh fruit.
  3. Enlist your children to help you cook. Kids can wash produce. Kids can measure out things. Cooking with your children will not only occupy their time but allows you to provide healthy meals that are home-made.
  4. Consider big pots of soup. Chili is another good meal to make.
  5. Buy pasta sauces or at least canned tomatoes and tomato sauce. They are healthy. They also have vitamin C, which Patt said is good for fighting off viruses.
  6. Cheese and eggs are good staples. They last a long time.
  7. Take additional vitamin C, whether from foods like orange juice or powdered packets of nutritional supplements that contain vitamin C and other nutrients designed to boost your immune system. Patt says there is scientific evidence that vitamin C may strengthen your immune system.

Finally, Patt said to take care of yourself to stay healthy during this stressful time. That includes getting enough sleep, eating fruits and vegetables, and staying well hydrated.