Local organization hoping to provide those in need with healthier holiday food options

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OTTAWA COUNTY, Mich. -- Ottawa Food is looking to provide people in need healthier holiday meals but are needing help from the community.

According to the pantry, 1 in 8 people across West Michigan and the Upper Peninsula don't have access to a reliable food source.  To help families and individuals this holiday season, they are looking for healthy food donations.

“The great thing is that healthier options aren’t any more expensive than the regular varieties in most cases,” said Lisa Uganski, Ottawa Food Coordinator. “Purchasing low-sodium varieties of canned vegetables or fruit packed in 100 percent juice is the same cost, and helps create a healthier meal.”

The organization suggests food donations such as:

• Canned vegetables (no salt added or low sodium)
• 100% fruit and vegetable juices
• Canned fruit in 100% juice
• Dried fruits and vegetables with no added sugar or fat
• Fresh produce (check to see if the pantry has the capacity to accept this as a donation)
• 100% whole grain bread or pasta
• Brown rice or wild rice
• Whole grain cereals with at least 3 grams of fiber (Cheerios , Shredded Wheat)
• Oatmeal
• Canned beans with no salt added
• Dried beans, peas and lentils
• Low-sodium or water packed canned meats and seafood
• Unsalted nuts (peanuts, almonds, cashews)
• Peanut butter
• Shelf-stable low fat dairy products (boxed milk, dry milk or evaporated milk)
• Soup with less than 400 mg sodium per serving

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