You probably know that it’s cheaper to buy foods that are in season. But did you know that eating seasonal foods can also improve your health? Use this Eating Seasonally Chart to save money and improve your health.
The way you eat has an enormous impact on both your health and the health of the planet. When you choose to eat seasonal, local, and organic produce, you can help curb global warming and air pollution, avoid toxic pesticides, support local farmers, improve your health, and enjoy fresh, tasty food.
Why You Should Buy Seasonal Produce
You can get the most nutritional value out of produce if you eat it when it’s ripe. You have to be careful, though, about the produce you find at the supermarket. It may look nice and feel ripe, but farmers usually have to harvest this produce before it’s ripe. That way they can transport it over long distances, and it won’t spoil. They also often spray the produce with chemicals to control pest infestation and delay ripening.
Fruits and vegetables get their nutrients through the stem of the living plant. So, when a farmer picks the produce before it’s ripe, it won’t gain any more nutritional value. It’s nutritional value actually decreases every day after it’s harvested. That’s why you should buy fresh seasonal produce that’s grown in your area.
You can also help the environment a lot by buying seasonal produce. All the trucks, ships, and planes that transport food around the country and the globe take a toll on the environment and public health. Take grapes, for example. Did you know that every year, nearly 270 million pounds of grapes are shipped to California? Most of them travel 5,900 miles from Chile to the Port of Los Angeles. All the cargo ships and trucks that transport those grapes release 7,000 tons of global warming pollution each year. That’s enough air pollution to cause dozens of asthma attacks and hundreds of missed school days in California. So, you can help reduce pollution and protect the environment if you stop buying imported produce and start buying seasonal fruits and veggies.
Eating Seasonally In Winter Video
Nutritional Value Of For Eating Seasonally Chart
You can find the nutritional value of the food on the Eating Seasonally Chart on this USDA Seasonal Food Guide.
How You Can Benefit From Seasonal Eating
Here are some of the greatest benefits that you can get from eating seasonal foods:
- When you eat foods that are in season, you can be sure that your food is as fresh as possible.
- Fresh, seasonal foods often have greater nutritional value than processed foods.
- Fresh, unprocessed fruits and vegetables can provide you and your family with some great health benefits.
- Farmers often spray produce with chemicals to prepare them for shipping. You can reduce your exposure to these chemicals by eating fresh, local foods.
- You don’t need to find space to store a lot of frozen and processed foods when you buy fresh produce, meat, eggs, and nuts.
- Seasonal food is cheaper, so you’ll be able to cut back on your food budget.
- Transporting foods thousands of miles can cause a lot of environmental damage. You can reduce that damage by buying local seasonal foods.
- Seasonal foods also provide you with exciting opportunities to try new foods and experiment with seasonal recipes.
- You’ll likely find that seasonal food simply tastes better than packaged and processed food!
Eating Seasonally In Spring Video
When You Should Buy Seasonal Foods
You can find different types of produce during different seasons depending on where you live. If you live in California or Florida, you’ll be able to find fresh fruits in the middle of winter that isn’t in season in the northern states. Find out what types of produce grow in your area, and buy them at peak ripeness. That way, you’ll get all the nutritional and health benefits that you miss out on if you buy produce that’s picked early and shipped thousands of miles.
Here’s when you should buy some of the most common seasonal foods:
Poultry: You’ll usually find that poultry is more plentiful in the summer months, so plan on buying it between June and August.
Eggs: Hens lay more eggs in the spring, so you should plan to eat lots of eggs between March and May.
Nuts: Nuts typically ripen in the fall, during September and October. They don’t go bad quickly, though, so you can enjoy them throughout the fall and winter.
Red Meat: You’ll probably find that red meats are more plentiful in the fall and winter because that’s when animals fatten themselves up for the winter.