We’ve all heard about the local food movement, but do we actually know the real reasons and benefits as to why we need to care about buying our produce locally? Buying local not only benefits your own health and well being, it also benefits the area around you.
Buying local allows our small farmers to sustain their business and not be bought out by large corporations. It also enables your neighborhood to grow and become more successful. Have you tried kumquats at the farmer’s market? Perhaps more importantly, food should taste good and it should be healthy for your body.
The best way to ensure that your food is at its freshest, ripest, most flavorful, and nutritious state is to buy local! According to cardiologist and professional chef Michael S. Fenster, MD, author of “Eating Well, Living Better”,
There’s a direct relationship between our food, our environment, our genetics and our health. Eating locally grown foods gives us our most nutritious, most flavorful meals. Few choices have as many personal ramifications as that which we decide to stuff into our gob.
Read on for locally sourced food tips and find out why you need to be eating natural and organic foods and not processed or GMO’s. Plus, see our top 10 reasons to buy local food.
Eat Local Foods for Good Health
When fruits and vegetables are picked from the plant, their nutritional value and flavor decrease at a rapid rate. In an ideal world, fruits and vegetables should be consumed as soon as they are picked. Though in our modern world, fruits and vegetables are often picked green, then shipped halfway across the world. Then they head to the supermarket, where they may sit on the shelf for an extended period of time before hitting your dinner plate.
Following this food buying process, food actually loses much of its nutrients. It’s left with little nutritional value, thereby causing us to get sick! Not to worry, though, the wonderful alternative is choosing food options that are sourced locally!
Eat Organic, Not GMO
Buying local means you will be eating “in season” and the fruits and veggies will have a high nutritional value. Organic is also always the best choice, as then we avoid eating harmful pesticides or GMO’s (Genetically Modified Organisms). Organically grown fruits and vegetables are more expensive in the grocery stores, but you can often find vegetables that have no pesticides at the farmer’s market for the same price as the conventional ones in the supermarket.
It is very expensive for a farmer to get certified as organic to sell in grocery stores. Smaller farmers may still farm organically, without the certification, and will thus choose to sell their produce at a farmer’s market as it is more economical.
Organic Tip: Farmers who do not have an organic certification, yet still farm organically often label their produce as pesticide or chemical-free.
Eat Natural Foods, Not Processed!
Although convenient, it is best to avoid pre-prepared and processed foods as you don’t know where the ingredients have come from or what harmful substances have been added. Additionally, the nutritional value rapidly decreases once a fruit or vegetable is chopped, sliced, or diced, so processed foods more often have minimal nutritional value. If you do decide to choose convenience, pick a restaurant that sources organically!
10 Reasons To Buy Local Food
- Stimulate the local economy
- Support local businesses
- Know where your food comes from
- Avoid harmful preservatives
- Get maximum nutritional value
- Enjoy the most flavor
- Healthier to eat what’s available and in season
- Improve your health and wellness
For more tips about eating local foods, buying at farmer’s markets, and saying No to GMO’s and processed foods, make sure to subscribe to our newsletter in the right hand column above.