Staying Safe – Food Safety When You Are On the Go
Recipes and Nutrition Tips – Keep Your Energy Up with Great Grains Trail Mix
Physical Activity Tips – Fall Activities with Your Family
Food Access Resources in Massachusetts – Pandemic EBT Benefits
Whether hiking or traveling in the car, you can save money by packing your own food. To prevent foodborne illnesses, follow these tips when you are eating a meal or snack on the go:
- Wash hands using bottled water and soap, hand sanitizer, or disposable wipes.
- If food is perishable, such as sandwiches, fresh fruit, vegetables, or yogurt, use a cooler and put frozen ice packs above and below the food.
- Keep hot foods hot in an insulated thermos. Fill thermos with boiling water, let stand for a few minutes, pour out the water, and then put in the hot food. Keep the bottle closed until mealtime.
- Keep coolers closed. Place them in a shaded area if you are outdoors.
- Throw away perishable foods that have been left out for more than 2 hours.
- When visiting a public area, wear a mask and keep 6 feet away from others to protect yourself and others from the spread of COVID-19.
Recipes and Nutrition Tips
Healthy snacks reduce your hunger and provide the nutrients your body needs. Try snacks that include two food groups, such as sliced apples and peanut butter, yogurt and fruit, a cheese stick and whole-grain crackers, or a hard-boiled egg and some berries. Control your portion size by packaging your snacks in reusable containers.
Physical Activity Tips
Looking for fall activities that provide physical activity for you and your family? Try these fun ideas:
- Go on a family outing. Walk through a pumpkin patch, apple orchard, corn maze, or a farm that allows you to pick fall vegetables. Butternut squash, collard greens, and herbs are in season now.
- Encourage children to help with raking leaves and jump in them together.
- Put on your sneakers and enjoy a fall foliage hike at a local park or trail.
- Create a fall scavenger hunt using items in nature, such as leaves and acorns.
Herbs are a great way to enhance your meals with flavor and color. Try preserving herbs by drying them. Follow these steps to save time and money:
- Gather herbs. For best results, pick the herbs before the plants start to flower.
- Wash gently and pat dry with a towel. Discard any spotted or discolored leaves.
- Tie the herb stems in bundles and hang upside down in a place that is warm and dry with some air circulation.
- Once completely dry, store in a container with a lid in a dark and dry place.
For more information, visit https://extension.umn.edu/preserving-and-preparing/preserving-herbs-freezing-or-drying .
Food Access Resources in Massachusetts
The Pandemic Electronic Benefits Transfer (P-EBT) Program in Massachusetts is a federal program created in the spring of 2020 to provide additional funds for families to buy food while schools were closed due to COVID-19. More P-EBT benefits were issued in September 2020 at a rate of $5.86 per day. For more information, visit: https://www.map-ebt.org/home