Consider these facts about seasonal foods:
1. Eating in season adds variety to your diet. Eating fresh, in-season foods exposes you to new fruits and vegetables, expanding your repertoire of nutrients and flavors in your meals. Variety is crucial to a well-rounded diet. Experts agree that variety is important for health because your body needs many different nutrients.
2. Local, seasonal food has more nutrients. Food starts losing nutrients the minute it’s picked. With in-season produce, the reduction in time from farm to table keeps the nutrient levels high. Additionally, foods that have to travel long distances are usually covered in chemicals to help preserve them.
3. In-season foods are less expensive. You can save money on your grocery bill every week by taking advantage of seasonal foods.
4. Seasonal food tastes better. Experts can’t agree on a single answer for why food tastes better in-season. A couple of factors, though, contribute to the good taste:
· Being able to wait and pick the food when it’s ripe naturally makes it taste better.
· Not having to travel a long distance cuts down on the time between when it’s harvested to the moment you eat it. So fewer chemicals are needed to preserve it.
These tips will help you discover a variety of foods that are healthy, budget-friendly, and in season:
1. Talk to your store manager. Shopping blindly isn’t the answer. You’ll benefit from asking questions and figuring out exactly which items are in season. Grocery store managers can provide you with helpful information on eating in season. They can help you pick out the freshest items and educate you about eating healthier.
2. Visit local farmers’ markets and talk to the farmers. Your local farmers’ markets are valuable sources of both food and information.
· Take a stroll through your local market and you’ll see fresh produce at every turn. This is a good way to learn more about what is being grown in season in your area and to stock up on fresh food.
3. Consider these seasonal foods:
· Spring. During spring, you can find a variety of greens. Spring is the perfect time to find fresh greens such as spinach, lettuce and others. Leafy green vegetables are a healthy addition to your diet and don’t add a huge amount of calories.
· Summer. During summer, look for berries and other fruits. Foods like strawberries and plums are a healthy addition to your diet during the summer.
· Fall. During fall, focus on vegetables and favorites like cranberries. The fall brings out beets, carrots, corn, eggplant, potatoes, and garlic.
· Winter. During winter, you can still find many vegetables, so your diet can stay healthy. Consider shopping for kale, broccoli, squash, turnips, and potatoes.
Eat healthier by adjusting your shopping habits to include seasonal foods. You’ll like the way you feel!