Eating as Per Season
A few decades ago, it was a rare treat to find foods like kiwis in grocery stores. Vegetables grown seasonally and locally were eaten. However, modern food processing and worldwide distribution of food have made foods available year round. Supported by a marketing deluge, canned and processed vegetables became more stylish and acceptable; with vegetables from far ends of the world more in vogue.
The flip side of this convenience is now being felt a few decades down, in the harm it has caused human health and the environment. When agriculture is planned for global markets, the use of chemicals and genetically modified crops became part of the farming strategy. With greater awareness of the impact of food systems on humans and the environment, there has come a new movement of eating food available locally and as per season.
Each season offers its variety of fresh produce that is not only good for your health but also promotes balance with the earth’s resources and life forms. Not only do foods taste best when they are in season, but they are also far fresher as they have not been shipped over long distances. Eating foods when nature produces them is what people the world over have done over the centuries. Eating seasonal produce is also a cornerstone of holistic medical traditions, which view it as fundamental to good health and emotional balance.
Some benefits of eating seasonal produce:
Vegetables that have naturally ripened and harvested at the right time are tastier.
The abundance of a crop in season means the cost of the produce is cheaper than off-season produce.
Fresh and High in Nutritional Value
Vegetables purchased in season are more likely to be fresher and higher in nutritional value. Some anti-oxidants such as Vitamin C foliate and carotenes rapidly decline when stored for a longer period.
Supports Body’s Natural Nutritional Needs
Winter vegetables offer comfort and are perfect for hot meals, healthy stews, soups, etc., during the cold season. Summer foods provide us with extra betacarotene and other carotenoids that help protect us against sun damage. They also lend more sweetness to salads making for an energetic summer.
Consuming more of seasonal local produce supports local farming in your area, which means less transportation, less refrigeration, less use of chemical preservatives, etc. The benefits of fresher, tastier and affordable food are reasons enough for one to buy produce that is grown locally during the season.