Local Produce is Healthier for You and the Planet!
-- By Becky Hand, Licensed & Registered Dietitian
Late summer and early fall are perfect seasons for visiting farmers markets. From the small, mom-and-pop stand at the corner, to the large, organized market with multiple vendors and extensive selections, it is definitely worth the trip. Experiencing food at its finest can encourage even the pickiest eater to try a few bites. When it comes to fresh fruits and vegetables, the market is the perfect place to locate some fabulous food finds for everyone in the family!
Benefits of shopping at the Farmers Market
- The fruits and vegetables are grown locally and picked when perfectly ripened. This enhances the taste, texture, and aroma of the produce.
- Often, market prices are lower than at grocery stores.
- Our existing system of food transportation and distribution requires enormous amounts of energy and resources. Before reaching your table, the average food item in the United States will travel 1,300 miles! In fact, only about 10% of the fossil fuel energy used in the world’s food system is used for production. The other 90% goes into packaging, transportation, and marketing of the food. All this inefficiency creates many environmental problems.
- Shopping at the Farmers Market benefits the local farmer and strengthens your local community.
Since the produce is picked at the peak of the season, nutrients, and phytochemicals will be more abundant. Hippocrates said, “Let food be your medicine.” The following chart shows many of the health benefits of fresh produce. Don’t get bogged down trying to remember the names of these different phytochemicals—just eat a RAINBOW OF COLOR!
To see the full article, visit Sparkpeople.com.
Posted by Horizon Fitness at 08/20/2008 03:02:28 PM |
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