What Does Eating Seasonally Mean?
I want to say, that I am already mostly a seasonal eater. I think this has to do with, how I grew up. As you know, I grew up in the country in a family that lived on a smaller budget. My mom had a nice vegetable garden and a lot of fruit trees and bushes. So, every spring she would plant what would grow in our area and climate. Harvesting different vegetables and fruits when they were ready for eating, canning them and preserving them was a big thing in my family. My mom would occasionally buy fruits and veggies, that she could not grow but be still locally available. So, I think this is somewhat going into that direction of seasonal eating. But let me tell you a bit more about this trend.
This new food movement circulating social media and accumulating a lot of attention is eating seasonally. Eating seasonally means only consuming produce that is harvested during the same time that you consume them. This means focusing your meals around apples, citrus, winter squash, and root vegetables during the winter months for example.
Before industrialized agriculture and big grocery stores, eating seasonally was the norm. There was no other choice than to grow your own vegetables and eat the crops when they were ready to be harvested. Now you can get almost any fruit and vegetables year-round. Industrialized agriculture is needed in today’s world due to the high demand but that still doesn’t mean you shouldn’t try to eat seasonally when you are able.
Here are a few reasons why you should try to eat seasonally year-round as much as possible:
Higher nutrients — Seasonal produce contain the highest amount of nutrients because they were harvested recently and are fresh. The fresher the produce the higher the nutrient value.
Better flavor — Seasonal produce will be more enjoyable to consume because of the flavor. Freshness also contributes to the flavors. Keeping the produce fresh while being shipped across the country is nearly impossible which is why the flavor of the produce will diminish.
More affordable — Being in season means there is an abundance of the crops resulting in cheaper prices. Most people who eat seasonally also purchase their products from the final local farmer’s markets and farmers. This will cut down costs because there are no added fees for transportation of the food.
Boost the local economy — Eating seasonal produce is best done by buying through local farmers and farmer’s markets. This puts money into the local economy and creates more jobs. It also guarantees freshness and provides more seasonal options.
Be creative – eating seasonally allows you to be creative with your foods and gives you a great variety.
Try some new foods and recipes – brings your focus to foods that are in season and might force you to try new foods and recipes you never had before.
At some point, we become stagnant and stick to the same foods each month due to convenience and familiarity. Not only will eating seasonally be better for your health, have better flavor and be more affordable it will also be fun and exciting. To get you kickstarted and give you some ideas for some seasonal recipes, check this cookbook out by Andrea Reusing—an award-winning chef, Cooking in the Moment: A Year of Seasonal Recipes. You can find more information about what produce is in the season by visiting the united states department of agriculture website and search for their produce guide.
I personally love to shop at the local farmers’ markets, and so far, wherever I have lived I was always able to find them really quickly by just searching the internet. Now, since we have just moved to Colorado, I found several different ones in our area that are being held outside during the warmer month. They don’t only sell produce, but you can also buy local meats, different kinds of honey, eggs, maple syrup, and preserves. Once it gets too cold to have the market in the town square, they move it into a huge indoor place, so you can still go shopping there. I really enjoy going to them in the warmer month, as it gives me the chance to be outside and do some walking and enjoy the fresh air. Farmer’s markets are supporting your local farms, and usually, the cost for veggies and fruits is lower when they are in season.
To make your trip to the next farmers market even more fun and good for the environment:
Bring your favorite shopping basket or bag
Bring your reusable mesh produce bags
Bring a good fresh market Thermal bag
I usually have my shopping basket, bag, roller and bottle bag with me when I go shopping, as well as my reusable mesh, produce bags. Invest a bit of money and get a fancy shopping bag or basket, and some good produce bags. We all can help to create less waste which means less harm to our planet, by staying away from the plastic bags. I use this bag from ThirtyOne for my cold/chilled items to carry them safely home.
I would love to know where and how do you do your seasonal shopping, thanks for sharing.
So here it is, take your favorite basket or bag, bring your thermal bag and head to your local farmers market.
Be well. Live seasonally. Help the environment. Support local farms.
Be happy and love life.
Life Coach & Mentor
Thanks for following my journey through improving life by discovering inspiring tips to de-stress, have a relaxing day, make good nutrition choices and just enjoy life! My goal is to share a little bit of what I find beneficial, interesting or just plain cute and fun!