Years ago, when I became interested in the relationship between food and our health, I naturally became interested in gardening and eating with the seasons.
For many people it’s hard to imagine that food can be grown outside, in your backyard. With the abundance at the grocery stores, or eating out in restaurants, we’ve lost an important connection to eating locally (our gardens) and eating in honor of what is in season right now.
One shining light of Covid has been an explosion of interest in growing your own food, local farms and farmer’s markets. For better or for worse we were nudged into cooking more and paying attention to food. When you are connected to food you realize that fruits, vegetables and herbs get grown in the dirt and come in seasons. The seasons are what define certain fruits, vegetables and herbs and make them unique.
But, is there a benefit to eating in season? I get asked these questions a lot. Here are five questions to ask yourself that just might convince you to start eating seasonally right now:
Why is Eating Seasonally Important?
Let’s get to the point on this one: seasonal food tastes better, has more nutrients and is more cost efficient. Don’t get me wrong. I love fresh berries all year long. I know how good they are for me and I crave them, even in the winter. However, in my hometown in CT, no one is growing strawberries while the snow is falling. They travel far, which means the nutrients beak down and I pay a pretty penny for them. Berries don’t taste as fresh as if they were picked from my garden in spring.
Is Eating In Season Healthier For You?
Absolutely. The closer you are to the food and where it is grown, the better. When my winter strawberries have traveled 1000’s of miles from Mexico, essential vitamins and minerals start to lose their potency. By the time they reach my bowl of morning oatmeal, they likely have been traveling for days.
Is Eating Seasonally Better For the Environment?
Yes. It’s safe to say that concern for the environment is high priority for so many of us. Consider what it takes to get a fruit or vegetable from one side of the country to the other. Now multiply that by millions of pounds of produce daily. Greenhouse gases, fuel, and the packaging are just a few of the ramifications of shipping food to long distance places. This summer, start with a few vegetables in containers on your deck and be sure to visit a farm near you.
Where Can I Find Seasonal Foods Near Me?
Years ago, farmer’s markets used to be far and few between. With the growing interest of eating seasonally, farms and farmer’s markets are booming. At any given day I can drive only a few miles to a market to pick up seasonal produce. To find a farmer’s market near you, follow this link. Better yet, start your very own garden. It doesn’t have to be big or overly ambitious. Trust me though, once you start your own garden, it’s hard to stop.
Where Can I Find Recipes for Seasonal Produce?
I’m glad you asked! In a couple of weeks I am starting a new round of my Summer Inspired Recipe Club. If you are needing fun, inspiration this summer this Club is for you. Each week, for 8 weeks, you will receive a packet of 5 recipes (breakfast, lunch, dinner, snack and dessert) that highlights a fruit, vegetable or herb of the week. Seasonal produce that is totally in season right during that week. Try them and simply enjoy them. I am also including three Zoom check-in’s and a food demo that will highlight your favorite recipes. The SIRC is a super fun way to experience the benefits of seasonal eating in a healthy delicious way. You can click HERE to join right now, we start June 30th 2021.