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May Produce of the Month: Lettuce

Posted by itsupportgroup
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on Monday, 01 May 2017 in School Nutrition Blog

lettuce2Happy Spring! Whitsons is pleased to present our vegetable of the month for the month of May, Lettuce. Lettuce is in season and will be featured in schools this month. So just why is lettuce so good for you? Aside from its great taste and large varieties, lettuce is packed with many nutrients.


Lettuce is high in Vitamin A, which is important for healthy vision and can help protect you from becoming sick. It is also a good source of Vitamin C as well. Vitamin C is necessary for strong bones and teeth, and helps heal cuts and scrapes. Romaine lettuce is high in potassium and fiber which is also beneficial for protecting the heart.


Lettuce can be enjoyed in many ways. First, it can provide an extra crunch to sandwiches, tacos, and wraps. Secondly, it serves as an excellent base for salads. This is your opportunity to be creative! There are a variety of lettuce types available and many different healthy toppings you can add; this could be vegetables, fruits, seeds, nuts, whole grains, lean meats, or low-fat or reduced-fat cheeses.


There are many different types of lettuce; these include leaf, iceberg, romaine, butterhead, etc.  When selecting lettuce, look for lettuce with crisp and clean outer leaves, and compact inner leaves; this will ensure its freshness. Make sure to stay away from those with dark or slimy spots; the leaves should also not be brown or be discolored in any way. Because all types of lettuce are different, they should be stored in slightly different ways; all need to be refrigerated.


Both Romaine and leaf lettuce should be washed and dried before they are stored in the refrigerator, while Boston lettuce does not need to be washed before storing. For maximum freshness these lettuces should be either stored in a plastic bag or in wrapped in a damp cloth. All types of lettuce should be stored away from fruits such as apples, bananas and pears, which can cause the lettuce to turn brown.


As always, Whitson’s offers a wide selection of salads on monthly school menus, so your child will have the opportunity to try and learn to love the great taste of lettuce!






About Katherine Ancona, R.D.

Katherine Ancona is a Registered Dietitian for Whitsons Culinary Group. She received her Master’s Degree in Food, Nutrition, and Culinary Science from Clemson University in 2013. While attending Clemson University, she led a team of undergraduate students in modifying recipes to be healthier. She is most interested in wellness, pediatric, and culinary nutrition, and she also serves as a volunteer for the Kids Eat Right Campaign. Katherine completed her dietetic internship at Oklahoma State University in 2014, and began working for Whitson’s Culinary Group as a Registered Dietitian in August of 2016.


Disclaimer: The opinions expressed in this blog are strictly those of the author and should not be construed as the opinions of Whitsons Culinary Group or any of its affiliates.  All content and material contained in this blog is provided for informational purposes only, and no representation is made as to the accuracy or completeness of this information.  It is general information that may not apply to you as an individual.  It is not medical advice and should not be treated as such.  You should not rely on the information in this blog as a substitute for your own doctor’s medical care or advice. If you have any specific questions about any medical matter you should consult your doctor or other professional healthcare provider.

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