As the seasons change, so should the foods we eat! Here are the top five reasons you should start eating seasonally and some tips for making this amazing change today!
1. Eat Better, Fresher, and More Nutrient Rich Foods!
Every food has it’s peak season when it not only taste the best, but it’s most nutritious too! Produce that is in-season and locally grown has the highest nutritional value because it doesn’t need to be picked long before it’s nutritional peak in order to make the thousand mile-trek across the country and be ripe upon arrival. This gives it more time to develop flavor and the maximum amount of nutrients it can offer!
2. It’s Better for the Environment
Speaking of that thousand-mile trek...eating seasonally and locally greatly reduces the impact that our purchases have on the environment as well. Choosing foods that can be sourced locally means less transportation and less greenhouse gasses!
3. Save Money
In-season produce is healthier for your wallet too! Because there’s less transportation and time between when they’re picked and when they’re sold, farmers can often offer a cheaper price for their produce.
4. Support Local, More Sustainable Farmers
I think this goes without saying that by buying in-season, local foods we support our local farmers. This boosts the local economy and creates a greater sense of community! Being able to interact with the people who produce our food not only allows us to ask questions about their sustainable practices and pesticide use, but it also adds so much more value to the food we provide ourselves and our families.
5. A Stronger Connection with Your Food
One of my favorite things about eating seasonally is getting creative with the foods I prepare. Trying new alternatives to classic dishes like a beetroot hummus or a warm brussel sprout salad gives me something to look forward to as the seasons change. Nurturing a greater understanding of where our food comes from lends to a stronger connection with the foods we eat.
Tips for Eating Seasonally
The first step to eating seasonally is to research which foods are in season in your area. Seasonalfoodguide.org is a great resource!
Growing your own fruits, vegetables, and herbs is a great, immersive way to get the freshest, in-season produce possible
Find a farmers market near you and make it a fun weekend excursion with the ones you love!
If you’re looking for local produce with the convenience of a grocery store, use this tool to find a food co-op near you.
Finding a balance should always be the goal. While it’s highly beneficial to eat seasonally, skipping out on foods solely because they are not in season could create a deficit in our diets. After all, those of us living in New England in the middle of winter couldn’t survive off mushrooms alone! So, make some swaps for in-season fruits and veggies when possible, but don’t go skipping out on your greens just because they’re not in season!
What are your favorite fall recipes or traditions? Comment below!