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Why You Need to Eat Seasonal Food (and how to get started)

Butternut Squash Fritters

Eating Seasonal Foods is Highly Beneficial

For your body AND your community:

When it comes to our diets, it’s important to think intersectionally:

  • what are your goals?
  • how do certain foods make you feel?
  • how do your overall health and medical history look?
  • what foods are accessible to you?

I want to talk about that last one for a little bit. Because as we’ve grown accustomed to having large grocery stores that stock practically any ingredient we could hope to find, many of us have lost touch with the concept of seasonal eating. Many of us aren’t even aware of which fruits and vegetables are freshest during each season. Losing that kind of connection to what we put into our bodies is detrimental to our health and makes it more difficult to practice mindful eating habits.

Heading into fall, we’re blessed with an abundance of produce that will be at its freshest. And here’s why you should take advantage of that:

5 Reasons to Eat Seasonal Foods

  1. It’s what your body needs right now. Our bodies are very reactive to the seasons, and food that’s harvested at its peak retains much of the vital nutrients that our bodies need to stay healthy during specific times of the year. For example, an abundance of citrus fruits are in season beginning in October and throughout the winter, when our bodies are most in need of Vitamin C to ward off cold and flu season.
  2. It tastes better. Produce harvested at its peak also retains more of its flavor profile, which results in tastier dishes. By committing to eating seasonally, you can guarantee that your fruits and veggies will taste their absolute best.
  3. It’s cost-effective. You’ll save money by eating seasonally as well. This is thanks to simple economics: when food’s in season, there’s more of it widely available, resulting in lower prices per pound at the store. Imported foods that are in season from overseas sources have inflated costs.
  4. It’s better for the environment. Seasonal foods have a lower carbon footprint because they don’t require as much transportation, refrigeration, etc. to go from the farm to your table.
  5. It helps your community. Most seasonal foods come from local sources, and the best places to find them are in your local farmers’ markets. Buying food that’s in-season is a great way to stay connected to your community and to support those who work hard to make sure the rest of us have something to eat every day!

TRY THIS: Butternut Squash Fritters

Butternut Squash Fritters

Butternut squash season is just kicking off, so this is a great time to pick up this beautifully bright and nutrient-dense veggie at your local store. It’s packed Vitamin A, Vitamin C, Magnesium, and Calcium, and a fantastic source of immunity-boosting beta- and alpha-carotenes. Just in time as we head into what looks to be a pretty ugly cold and flu season (thanks, ‘rona 😒)

What are some of YOUR favorite seasonal foods? Head over to Insta and let me know; I want to hear from you @FitMenCook!