Seasonal Eating, Why It Matters
What Does It Mean To Eat Seasonally?
You may have heard the term “eating seasonally” before and you might also know that this simply means that you’re eating fruits and veggies that are “in season”. More specifically, eating seasonally means that the fruits and veggies you’re buying at the grocery store or the farmers market have been harvested at the time of peak nutrients in the plant’s growing stage.
It’s a little difficult to know exactly what is and isn’t in season, mostly because basically all produce is available all year round. Luckily, there are a couple of websites that can help you find what is available seasonally in your area. www.seasonalfoodguide.org is a convenient website that lets you choose your state and the time of year that you are aiming to find seasonal produce for and gives you a whole list of fruits and veggies you should be able to find at grocery stores.
Benefits To Eating Seasonally
Eating seasonally is beneficial to more than just your diet and your health. It’s also beneficial to the earth in that it maintains a balance in the earth’s resources and life forms, which we like to call harmonious living. Eating seasonally also reduces our carbon footprints by reducing the amount of transportation these fruits and veggies must travel before they get to your local grocery store.
As far as our diets and our bodies go, it makes sense that we’re meant to eat seasonally, according to the idea of “harmonious living”. When we eat seasonal fruits and vegetables, they are significantly higher in nutrients, because they are harvested at their peak, instead of being harvested before they peak and are preserved in various ways. On top of all the other benefits of eating seasonally, produce that is in season simply tastes better! It’s hard to argue that eating fruits and vegetables at the perfect ripeness is one of the most satisfying things in the food world.
What Is In Season for Fall and Winter?
Right now during the Fall season, and working our way towards the winter season, you may think that options are limited as far as produce, but that’s certainly not the case! Fall and Winter is a great time for roasting and steaming veggies that are in season and baking with hearty fruits that are currently in season. Squash, potatoes, onions, garlic Brussels sprouts, and cauliflower are a few popular vegetables that you might already buy during the colder seasons, as they’re all great for hearty soups and roast well. Pumpkins and apples are both great ingredients for baking during the fall, especially in things like pies, cakes, and cookies – perfect for the season’s occasions.
Foods That Are Out of Season
Even though it is beneficial for the environment and for our bodies and diets to eat seasonally, it isn’t always the most realistic option. Luckily, there’s a few ways that are better than others to eat out of season fruits and veggies and still gain some sort of benefit from them in you diet. Frozen fruits and vegetables are a great way to eat produce that is no longer in season, although you won’t get the optimum nutrients that you would get from fresh produce, it’s still a better substitute than canned fruits and vegetables or even eating fruits and vegetables that are out of season, fresh off the shelf. It shouldn’t be forgotten that produce that is out of season has a lot of travel time and in that time decreases in nutritional value and increases in price.
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