Eating seasonally is a great way to eat healthier, save money, and support your local farmers' markets. However, it's not always easy to make the transition from whatever is on sale at your supermarket to buying only what's in season. That's why we've put together this list of benefits that will hopefully convince you to give seasonal eating a try!
Seasonal eating is an easy way to make sure you're getting local food, which can reduce your carbon footprint and support the environment.
When you buy local food, you're getting something that's fresher and has less packaging. It also means that your food has traveled less distance to get to your table--and this is good for the environment because it reduces pollution from transportation. Seasonal eating supports local farmers and businesses, which helps keep money in the community. And lastly, eating seasonally means consuming fresh produce at its peak ripeness: when it tastes best!
So how can you get started with seasonal eating? Try looking out the window or go outside to see what's growing in your area. You can also check out websites like LocalHarvest and Eat Well Guide which will help you connect to local farmers.
Seasonal foods tend to be healthier because they were picked at the height of ripeness.
Seasonal fruits and vegetables are generally healthier than non-seasonal ones because they were picked at their peak ripeness. When you eat out of season, it's likely that the produce was picked before it was ripe and then stored for a long time before it made its way to your plate. The longer this process takes, the more nutrients are lost through oxidation or other effects of ageing.
Seasonal foods tend to be more nutritious because they're harvested at their nutritional peak--when they bring you the most vitamins, minerals and antioxidants in one bite!
Here are some of the best foods to eat in each season:
Spring: Asparagus, artichokes, broccoli, fava beans, green leafy vegetables (kale), peas, radishes and spinach.
Summer: Arugula, basil, berries, cucumbers, eggplant and melons.
Autumn: Apples, beets, broccoli rabe, Brussels sprouts, cabbage (red and green), carrots and cauliflower.
Winter: Beets, cabbage (red and green), carrots, kale and potatoes.
You may not be able to eat all of these foods every day, but try to incorporate as many seasonal fruits and vegetables into your diet as possible. Remember that even though they're in season, they still need to be fresh!
What's your favourite seasonal food? Let us know in the comments below!
Eating seasonally helps you enjoy the flavours of each season.
You can taste the difference. Food that's in season is fresher, which means it tastes better and has more nutrients than out-of-season produce. It also tends to be less expensive, because it doesn't have to travel as far before reaching your table (and therefore isn't as susceptible to damage).
Eating seasonally helps you enjoy the different flavours of each season: When apples are at their peak in autumn, try an apple pie or crisp; when strawberries are ripe in springtime, make a strawberry shortcake or smoothie; when peaches are sweetest in summertime--well let's just say there are plenty of options here!In addition to eating seasonally, consider the following tips for buying and storing fresh produce:
- Buy organic foods whenever possible. Try different varieties of produce, and experiment with new recipes that use in-season ingredients.
- Store fresh produce properly to ensure that it will last longer. Keep fruits and vegetables in the refrigerator, not on your countertop or kitchen table.
If you're trying to eat healthier, but don't know where to start, there's no need to panic. Starting a new eating plan doesn't have to be difficult; it just takes some planning and preparation ahead of time. Once you get into the habit of preparing fresh food for yourself and your family on a daily basis (and avoid those tempting fast food joints), you'll wonder why you didn't do it sooner!
It's easier to eat seasonally if you're cooking with fresh ingredients, rather than buying processed foods made with imported ingredients.
You can use fresh ingredients in your cooking to make sure you're eating seasonally. For example, if you're making a salad and want to include tomatoes or cucumbers, it's best to buy them when they're in season at your local farmers market or grocery store.
If you have access to fresh produce year-round (and most people do), it's still worth checking out what's in season locally before buying any imported produce. This will ensure that the food tastes better and is more nutritious than what would be available during other times of year--and it may even save money!
When shopping for fresh produce at a supermarket or farmers market: look for bright colours; firm texture; absence of mouldy spots; no bruising around stem ends (if applicable); vibrant smell; and a good amount of edible flesh on the produce itself. If you're buying fresh fruit, look for melons that are ripe but not mushy; firm apples with no brown spots; and a green stem end on tomatoes (if applicable).
A diet based on seasonal foods will save you money.
The benefits of seasonal eating are many, but one of the most important is that it will save you money. Seasonal foods tend to be cheaper than non-seasonal ones because they're in season and have been grown locally.
Buying in bulk can also help keep costs down: if you find a great deal on fresh produce at the farmers' market or grocery store, it doesn't make sense to buy only enough for one meal--you'll likely pay more per pound than if you bought several pounds at once (and then freeze them). Buying pre-packaged food can also be expensive; if you want some inspiration for what's available in your area and how much it costs, check out local farms' websites where they post prices for their products!
Another way to save money is by planning your meals around seasonal produce. If you're not sure what's available or how to use it, head to your local farmer's market and ask the farmers there! They'll be able to tell you exactly when different fruits and veggies are in season, which ones work well together, and how best to prepare them.
So if you want to eat better, start by eating what's available locally at different times of the year. The benefits go beyond just having a tasty meal--the whole process also helps you connect with nature and feel good about yourself.