Frozen Diet Meals: Good or Bad?

by in Grocery Shopping, February 16, 2012
frozen diet meals
Are frozen diet meals as healthy as they sound?

While the allure of healthy prepared meals fresh out of a box may be tempting, are these frozen diet foods actually good for you?

Frozen diet meals like Lean Cuisine, Weight Watchers and Healthy Choice offer a wide range of options – you can find everything from breakfast sandwiches to pizza to Chinese noodle dishes. Those in favor of these packaged meals are all about the ease of use.

Top 5 Pros
•    Portion controlled
•    Ready in minutes
•    A wide variety to choose from
•    Easy to transport and store at work
•    No cooking skills required

Folks on the opposing side argue that convenience will cost you.

Top 5 Cons
•    Loaded with sodium – most brands have a at least 25-percent of the your daily recommendation
•    Unappetizing odor and fake taste
•    Lots of unrecognizable ingredients, little real food
•    Pricey – $4 a box may not seem like a lot but cost can pile up quickly
•    Not a long-term solution to healthy eating (do you want to rely on these meals forever?)

Bottom Line: What’s more important? Eating real whole foods or taking the effort (and creativity) out of meal prep? If convenience trumps quality, you may want to reconsider how much you value your health.

Tell Us: We feel a taste test coming on. Which brands would you like us to try?

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Dana Angelo White, MS, RD, ATC, is a registered dietitian, certified athletic trainer and owner of Dana White Nutrition, Inc., which specializes in culinary and sports nutrition. See Dana’s full bio »

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Comments (562)

  1. […] Healthy Eats – Food Network Healthy Living Blog Posted in FoodTV · Tagged: Diet, Frozen, Good, Meals […]

  2. […] Read at source website […]

  3. […] Macarons Frozen Diet Meals: Good or Bad? Food Network Thu, February 16, 2012 3:00 PM UTC Food Network Rate this Loading … Share (function(){var […]

  4. Erin says:

    Kashi frozen entrees please!

  5. Melissa says:

    Try Smartones! A few years ago I lost 30 pounds by partially eating these (only the meatless ones). I do agree it was partly portion control for me! I thought they tasted pretty good!

  6. Chas says:

    Even though the prepared meals may not be great for me, being overweight is worse. I follow weight watchers and by eating the same thing for breakfast and lunch during the week, I stay on track. I’m just sure to never add salt to the food I prepare for dinner or the meals I eat on the weekends.

  7. sgab80 says:

    Wt Watchers, smart ones. Agree not with meat added. Lasagna Florentine and Broccoli Alfredo with the single serving corn, green tea for dinner every weeknight. Cook wt watcher recipes and/or eat out on weekend. Keeps me in a routine. 30lb wt loss. Just makes it easier during the week.

  8. […] Frozen Diet Meals: Good or Bad? […]

  9. […] not talking about zapping frozen entrees; how about real ingredients and healthy meals straight out of the microwave […]

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