Setsuko Yoshizumi loves to cook.
“My husband is a bit of a picky eater, so I took care preparing healthy dishes for him — all three meals,” she says. This was her routine for decades prior to this summer, when her husband broke his leg and had to be hospitalized. He’s still recovering at a rehabilitation center, leaving Yoshizumi, 83, on her own.
She visits her husband regularly, but this sudden solitude, combined with the record-breaking heat of the past few months, has been taxing, disrupting her ability to plan out meals to cook for herself. Therefore, she has resorted to dining on a wide variety of ready-to-eat retort pouch foods, the kinds that can be microwaved or boiled. Also on her menu are pre-cut packaged vegetables and health-conscious bento lunches.