What Food Can You Donate?

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Whether you’re looking to give your favorite food to a cause or want to do something extra to help people in need, there are several ways to help. Food donations of canned vegetables or dried beans can help fill the needs of families who cannot buy fresh produce. Other healthy food donations include nuts and Quinoa.

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Canned or dried beans

Good nutrition is essential for good health, proper growth, and disease management. Many food banks and food pantries serve populations with limited resources, and these individuals often suffer from chronic health issues. Adding healthy foods and spices to the diet can make a big difference in the health of those who need them.

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When donating canned and dried beans to the food pantry, follow the items’ expiration date. Canned goods should be at most 18 months. Dry beans and grains should be at most two years old. Also, label any food items with the ingredients so that the pantry does not encounter any health issues or food poisoning.

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Quinoa

Quinoa is a versatile grain used as a base in salads, veggie burgers, and more. Its versatility makes it a great way to help fight hunger in communities. A single cup of cooked Quinoa provides 222 calories and about 8% of your daily recommended daily allowance of protein. In addition, Quinoa is an excellent source of several essential minerals, including manganese and magnesium. Additionally, it has more than 20 percent of your daily folate requirement.

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Growing Quinoa is easy and inexpensive. Unlike many other grains, Quinoa doesn’t require much labor or resources. This makes it an excellent crop for developing countries, particularly those struggling with food insecurity. Quinoa is grown in over 120 countries, with Peru, Bolivia, and Ecuador producing the bulk of the world’s supply. In 2017, researchers sequenced the plant’s genome, demonstrating its adaptability.

Quinoa is also easy to prepare. It cooks quickly and only requires two cups of water. However, it’s essential to rinse Quinoa before you use it. This is because the seed coating contains saponins, natural pest repellants. Although some varieties of Quinoa are labeled “rinsed,” it’s still important to rinse thoroughly until the water is no longer sudsy.

Quinoa is a nutrient-dense grain that has been growing wild in South America for thousands of years. Its highly nutritious seeds contain 13.8 to 21.9 percent protein, comparable to milk. It’s also gluten-free and contains all essential amino acids and vitamins.

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