Do fresh ingredients make a difference in food preparation? You bet it does! It’s always best to use fresh ingredients when cooking because it makes the final dish taste better and also allows you to get more nutrients from your meals. And isn’t this the point of eating - to nourish your body with essential vitamins and minerals that will keep you strong and healthy?

Let’s learn more about why fresh ingredients should be the only things going into your meals!

Better Flavor

When eating your meals, you want the best possible flavor from your food. Fortunately, fresh ingredients make it easy to do this. They provide an authentic flavor as opposed to an artificial one, and it’s easier to control the texture of the food. For the best flavor, use fruits and vegetables within 48 hours of purchasing them.

Healthier Meals

Using fresh ingredients allows you to avoid processed foods that contain high levels of sodium, fat and sugar. While these foods do taste good, they can lead to serious health issues like obesity, heart disease, high blood pressure and diabetes. Fresh ingredients retain their nutritional value, support good nutritional health and are less likely to be exposed to preservatives.

Save Money

Contrary to popular belief, it actually costs less to eat healthy. Sure, foods like chia seeds are expensive, but basic nourishment like carrots, beans and potatoes are as cheap as chips. Plus, with processed foods, you’re paying for convenience. For example, a 5-lb bag of russet potatoes will cost you around $2-$3, whereas a 2-lb bag of fries costs $3-$4.

Support Good Nutrition

Processed foods tend to be high in sugar, artificial ingredients, refined carbohydrates and trans fats. Unfortunately, most people don’t realize what they’re consuming when they eat these types of foods, especially when they’re marketed to look healthy. Cooking with fresh ingredients makes it easy to incorporate vitamins, minerals and antioxidants into each meal.

Experiment with Different Flavors

Shopping at your grocery stores for locally sourced produce and ingredients allows you to experiment with all types of flavors and textures. Rather than eating the same canned soups or boxed pastas, you can try seasonal dishes like roasted pumpkin soup or fresh salads with berries, goat cheese and grilled chicken.

When you cook with fresh ingredients, you set the foundation for healthy, delicious meals that support good nutrition. You can also control how the meals are made, so be sure to grill or bake your meals and choose healthy cooking oils like olive oil, coconut oil and avocado oil.

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