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Canadians Want More Natural Foods

Almost 60 percent of Canadians say they are making an effort to change their eating habits. Leaning towards more natural foods, we’re committed to eating less sugar, salt and fat, and are focusing more on fruit, vegetables, grains and lean protein. That’s good news for our long-term health.

If you’re in charge of choosing recipes in hospitals, cafeterias, retirement or long-term care settings, it’s vital to know what Canadians are looking for. The easiest way to support the goal towards healthy eating is to pick recipes with whole, minimally processed ingredients rather than ultra-processed products.

Processed, packaged?

In a recent survey of Canadian adults, over 60 percent said they are looking for products that are free of additives, preservatives, pesticides and hormones. Interestingly, when compared to younger Canadians, older adults are more likely to say that it’s important for their foods to be locally produced, free of additives, and to come from a known brand.

When planning menus, the ingredients you use in the recipes matter a lot. Canadian-produced foods with no additives is something to boast about on your menu! But how can you decide if an ingredient is really “natural?” Health Canada says natural foods should not to contain artificial flavouring or food additives, and “cannot have been submitted to processes that have significantly altered their original state.”

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Chicken with Global Flair

If there’s one thing Canadians can agree on, it’s our love of chicken! Collectively, we eat about 1 billion kilograms of chicken each year. Since we eat so much of it, it’s important to drum up new recipes to keep taste buds happy.

As menus rotate in senior living settings, it’s wise to stick to residents’ favourites, and add something new to spark interest and keep everyone satisfied. Are you looking for new ideas for your preferred cuts of poultry? We’ve scanned the globe and come up with a variety of choices that speak to the growing diversity of cultural and ethnic backgrounds in Canadian retirement and long-term care settings.

Based upon the preference of residents, here are new ideas for chicken dishes that are inspired by Italy, Greece, China, India, Central Europe, Ukraine and the Middle East.  To find the recipes that are referenced below and many others, simply check out our recipe page.