[Guest Post] Boxes, Cans and Jars….Oh, My!
OK, so you’re in a hurry…again. You just finished a long day at the office and are making a quick stop at Coborn’s before you race home to make dinner in time to get junior to the soccer field. Yes, that’s life for many of us. Not enough hours in the day. And, in an ideal world, that dinner you throw on the table would be a homemade culinary masterpiece, filled with fresh foods and vegetables that are loaded with great nutrition to keep your family healthy and energized. Sound unrealistic? On a “normal” weeknight, who has time to create that ideal meal? I’m guessing few people have the luxury of extra time after work to poke around the store reading the nutritional facts panel of each package to weigh out the nutrient details versus the unhealthy factors.
Fortunately, there is a terrific tool–available right here in Central Minnesota–to help busy folks save time and feed our families well. It is called NuVal. Developed by an independent team of recognized medical and nutrition experts, NuVal is a system that scores foods based on their overall nutritional value and gives them a score of 1-100. One being the lowest nutritional value and 100 the highest. For example, a frozen DiGiorno Pepperoni Pizza scores an 8 and strawberries score 100. It is that simple!
NuVal scores are powered by a sophisticated scientific algorithm that takes into account over 30 nutrients (including vitamins, minerals, fiber, antioxidants, sugar, fats, trans-fats, protein, sodium and carbohydrates, to name a few) and how they influence health. Should you buy the chicken nuggets or the frozen pot pie? Yogurt or cottage cheese? The whole wheat bread or the high fiber bread? These are the decisions that NuVal can help you make–in seconds. The NuVal system does the work, so you can make your food choices quickly and with confidence. You can spend your valuable time with your family instead of reading labels.
If we only ate foods direct from nature, NuVal wouldn’t be particularly useful. However, as people with busy schedules, we do buy processed, pre-packaged foods in cans, boxes, bottles and jars. That is reality. How can we make this reality just a little bit healthier? On your next trip to a Coborn’s store, look for a little hexagon-shaped logo on the shelf tag. The number on the hexagon is the NuVal score for that item. So, the next time you are grabbing spaghetti sauce on-the-fly to whip up a pre-soccer meal, you can choose a sauce that scores a 56 instead of one that scores a 28. That simple trade-up might just give junior the extra boost he needs to score on the field as well!
Passionate about food and good nutrition, Kelly, a BLEND specialist for CentraCare Health Foundation, is also a mom who wants to set her kids up for a lifetime of good health. NuVal is a system designed to lead customers to the most nutritious food choices. It is not a diet or weight-loss plan. The opinions expressed in this blog are the opinions of the writer and not the opinions of NuVal LLC, Coborn’s, Inc., BLEND, and the CentraCare Health Foundation.