Your refrigerator: Spring cleaning and food safety

RefridgeratorPost

Content provided by www.HealthBytesNYC.com

Do you know what’s in your refrigerator? Not everyone does. The outdated sauces, expired dairy products, rotting fruits and veggies, and the bacteria: It’s all there at one time or another for most people. Now that the clocks have “sprung” ahead, this is a great time to spring-clean your refrigerator and learn about healthful food storage habits — which will help you keep on track for healthful living.

Keeping Your Fridge Spick-and-Span
Few people actually take the time to really clean their refrigerator, meaning with soap, bleach and hot water. Because germs are introduced to this appliance daily, it is important to routinely clean it just like you would the rest of your home. Clean up spills as soon as they occur, and take the time to wipe down drawers and door trays.

The Right Temperature
Many people don’t understand the dangers of improper food storage. You can reduce the potential for food-borne illness by keeping your refrigerator running at 40 degrees Fahrenheit or lower, and your freezer at zero degrees or lower. It is easy for temperatures to fluctuate when doors are continually opened, so it’s a good idea to check the temperature now and then to make sure the thermostat is set properly.

Where’s the Beef?
The location of your food in the fridge is key to food safety.
• Keep your meats and dairy on the lower shelves. You don’t want raw meat juices to drip onto your produce or cooked foods.
• Keep fruit and veggies either in produce drawers or on higher shelves, along with cooked foods. Local farm-grown veggies are great, but the dirt they bring in is not, so make sure to brush off dirt before refrigerating.

Product “Due” Dates
Consider the “sell by” and “use by” dates on product labels. Condiments and sauces, especially, can sit in the fridge for months before being completely consumed. Check the dates, and throw the product out if it has changed flavor, odor or appearance.
• A “sell-by” date tells the store how long to display the product for sale, meaning the product should be purchased before that date.
• A “use-by” date is recommended by the manufacturer to use the product before that date for best quality.

What to Stock
When it comes to produce, fresh is not always best if you can’t consume it fast enough. Consider keeping only the fresh fruits and vegetables you will eat within a week. Frozen vegetables are good to have on hand to add to casseroles, pizza and stir-fries. Buy low-fat dairy products such as milk, cheese and yogurt, as well as lean meats. If you do not expect to eat the meat within 2 to 4 days, consider freezing it for later use. Avoid buying large portions of easily spoiled ingredients like sour cream, cheese and fish.

Planning Ahead
Avoid food waste and food-borne illness (and save money, too!) by making a grocery list before you go to the store. Without excess and uneaten foods in the refrigerator, cleaning up and cleaning out is easier.

Here’s to healthful food storage — and healthful living!

Information provided by Elizabeth North, RD, CDN, Registered Dietician at Roosevelt Hospital.



News
Entertainment
Sports
Lifestyle
National

Mutant worms stay sober, even on alcohol

U.S. researchers have developed "mutant worms" that do not get drunk by alcohol, a breakthrough that could lead to new treatment for people trying to quit drinking

Local

K-9 nose helps capture $150K in cocaine at…

A furry, four-legged security agent helped authorities stop an illegal cocaine shipment from sneaking past JFK customs.

National

Minnesota man asked to leave Southwest flight after…

A man and his two sons were asked to leave a Southwest Airlines flight after the man sent a tweet complaining about being treated rudely by a gate agent.

National

Man sues hospital after surprise penis amputation

An Alabama man who went in to a hospital last month for a circumcision awoke after surgery to find his penis had been amputated, his lawyer said on Thursday.

Movies

Review: Brett Ratner's big 'Hercules' movie is small…

The latest "Hercules," starring Dwayne Johnson as the half-god beefcake of Greek myth, strips its hero and tale of most of its fantastical elements.

Arts

Scientists recreate world's smallest Monet copy

Scientists have reproduced a famous Impressionist painting using nano-printing, to create what has been described as the world's smallest work of art. Reworked at the…

Television

Jerry Seinfeld is ambidextrous, and other Reddit AMA…

See some of the weirder highlights of Jerry Seinfeld's recent Reddit AMA.

Going Out

Grab a pedestrian and start dancing at What…

As a New Yorker, I’ve mastered the art of focusing my gaze straight ahead. Though it occasionally piques my interest, the absurdities that play out…

U.S. Soccer

Orlando City takes shot at NYCFC over Frank…

Orlando City reminded the world how big a signing Brazilian star Kaka earlier this month with a photo of Kaka mobbed by fans juxtaposed against Lampard.

NBA

Jeremy Lin says 'Linsanity' is over as he…

Jeremy Lin lit up the NBA two years ago with his play for the Knicks but he has no desire to recreate "Linsanity" in his new career with the Lakers.

NFL

2014 NFL Fantasy Football Top 100 overall player…

2014 NFL Fantasy Football Top 100 overall player rankings

U.S. Soccer

NYCFC announce signing of Frank Lampard

The tease of a big signing Thursday by new MLS side NYCFC ended up being one rumored for weeks. England midfielder Frank Lampard agreed to…

Tech

Forget Wi-Fi: Li-Fi could be the future

Li-Fi technology – developed by Mexican company Sisoft – is wireless internet connectivity using specialized LED light.

Tech

Weather app Climendo might be the most accurate…

The wait for a truly accurate weather forecast could finally be over thanks to a nifty new app called Climendo.

Tech

Napkin Table puts focus off the phone and…

Michael Jan, a design student at Tunghai University in Taiwan, has invented a serviette-picnic blanket hybrid called the Napkin Table.

Style

Essie's new Color Boutique

Essie launches high-tech kiosks at major airports and malls across the country.