Tips to Eating Healthy
Today I am sharing why eating seasonal food is really important to eating healthy.
Eating healthy is something we all need to do. For some of us, it means eating more fruits and vegetables.
I think the best way to getting everyone in your home to eat more fruits and vegetables is to always buy about Seasonal food.
I will be honest with you. I haven’t really paid attention to seasonal food. I am pretty sure that’s because I live in California and we are pretty spoiled out here.
So what is Seasonal Food?
Seasonal food is produce that is bought and eaten shortly after it is harvested. Every state has “seasonal food” and it’s something that you might want to start paying attention to.
Seasonal produce varies not only by the month but also where you are located. In California, there are 64 seasonal produce items available in January. In Ohio, there are six.
I told you we are kind of spoiled in California.
So why does it matter? Why is it important to eat food that is seasonal?
Seasonal food is fresher, tastier and more nutritious than food consumed out of season. It’s also much better to eat than the produce that is flown in from half way around the world. (Trust me, more than half of the produce in your local market is probably from really far away.) More produce eaten means eating healthy.
Even though we all like to eat berries year round, the best time to eat them is when they can be purchased directly from a local grower shortly after harvest. In fact, all you need to do is head to your local farmers market and everything you see there is likely to be your seasonal produce.
Seasonal fruits and vegetables produced on local farms are often fresher, and since they are picked at their peak of ripeness are also better tasting and full of flavor. What’s more, studies have shown that fruits and vegetables contain more nutrients when allowed to ripen naturally while growing. Seasonal produce leads to eating healthy.
Of course, locally grown fruits are less expensive too.
I love going to the farm stands in Ventura. They have so many great items to choose from. And the prices are great.
There are a lot of reasons why is eating local food important
- Purchasing locally grown foods helps support local farms and maintains farmland and open space in your community.
- Local food supports the local economy. The money you spend on products from local farmers and growers stays in the community and is reinvested with other local businesses. In addition, food grown locally, processed locally and distributed locally (for example, to local restaurants) generates jobs and subsequently helps stimulate local economies.
- Local growers can tell you how the food was grown. When you buy directly from farmers, you have the opportunity to ask what practices they use to raise and harvest the crops. When you know where your food comes from and who grew it, you know a lot more about your food.
Where else can you find seasonal produce?
In your own backyard! When you grow your own produce, you are getting pesticide-free plants that taste better than anything you could find elsewhere!
I built planter boxes in our backyard four years ago and I grow vegetables year-round in Southern California. Of course, you might have a limited growing season based on where you live. But now is the time to plan your garden for Spring.
Where to Find Seasonal Produce in Your Area
I found a great site https://www.seasonalfoodguide.org/ where you can find exactly what your seasonal fruits are based on the time of year and where you live.
It’s time to start planning your recipes around your seasonal produce. Let’s eat healthier and support our local farmers whenever we can. Better tasting produce will lead to eating more fruits and vegetables. And that’s a good thing for everyone in your home.
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Such a great idea Leslie! Your subscribers might also want to check their state agriculture sites for charts on seasonal vegetables. I live in NC and our agriculture department has one here http://www.ncagr.gov/markets/availabilitychart.pdf that is specific to seasonal fruits and produce for our state. Thanks for the reminder.
I really appreciate your CA perspective!! I live in Ventura County and every time I read bloggers like you highlighting the bounty of fruits and vegetables in our area and state I love it! Love your blog 🙂