What Are the Benefits of Eating Seasonal?
Did you know that each season has its set of fruits and vegetables? Since we can purchase fruits and vegetables all year round, some people may forget that each season has its set of fruits and vegetables. Since fresh fruits and vegetables are not refined or frozen, they are more flavorful and nutritious while eaten in season.
As mentioned, each season brings an abundance of delightfully fresh produce. It is a great time to start experimenting with new recipes or reworking old ones to add more seasonal fruits and vegetables. Not only would the taste buds be wowed, but there are also health benefits. Here are some of the many advantages of eating seasonally.
What is Seasonal Food?
Food that is purchased and consumed at the time of harvest is known as seasonal food. With a few exceptions, this usually is after the item is harvested; for example, sweet potatoes are best consumed after a long period.
Furthermore, seasonal fruits and vegetables provide all of the vitamins and nutrients that our bodies need at that time. So it’s best to eat fruits and vegetables when they’re in season because you know the nutrient level is excellent and new when you buy seasonal fruits.
Good For your Health
Seasonally produced foods are more nutritionally rich than their non-seasonally grew and consumed counterparts. Foods grown outside of season are unable to fulfill their normal growing and ripening cycles.
Furthermore, it will have a more intense and rich flavor because it has naturally ripened on the vine or ground. It’s no secret that in-season fruits and vegetables are the juiciest and most vivid tasting. Nature is more thoughtful than we realize, and seasonal foods cater to seasonal requirements.
Saves up Money
It can go unnoticed, but buying seasonal produce is less expensive. When a fruit or vegetable is in season, it is plentiful and, predictably, less expensive. It’s as easy as supply and demand. When you buy produce that isn’t in season, it isn’t as readily available, and the price you pay reflects this.
In reality, buying seasonal products saves so much money that it’s one of the best ways to save money on healthy food. And don’t forget, you will save even more money if you take advantage of weekly specials.
Helps with The Environment
Not only that eating seasonally helps individuals with their needs, but also it helps the environment. Eating depending on the season reduces demand for out-of-season produce, resulting in more local produce and local farming in your area, as well as less transportation, refrigeration, hot homes, and irradiation of produce.
Most of us don’t consider the effect of long-distance travel on the nutritional value of our food and prices and the environment, including fuel pollution. Consider purchasing produce that has been produced in your area. Furthermore, since these foods do not move nearly as far, the associated fuel emissions and transportation costs are negligible.
Most of us are aware of how much more delicious fresh-from-the-farm fruits and vegetables are compared to their stale, mass-produced counterparts. The latter are often handled with ripening agents such as gases, chemicals, and heat processes and are bred to favor uniform ripening and shelf life over flavor.
Furthermore, food that is grown and harvested in season tastes much riper, fresher, and sweeter. It won’t have to suffer transportation time or being picked until it was produced because it isn’t imported.
So, what exactly is your microbiome? The abundance of good bacteria found in our digestive systems (and in our bodies) is beneficial to our overall health, including immune health, digestive health, skin health, blood sugar control, weight management, and much more. Our gut bacteria are constantly evolving for the better, and seasonal eating aids this process.
Within 24 hours, a highly-processed diet high in sugar, unhealthy fats, and carbs may have a detrimental impact on the microbiome! Fortunately, we can relax knowing that we can move back into that time frame by eating a plant-rich, balanced diet.
Wider Range of Food Choices
Another advantage of consuming seasonal foods is that you get a more comprehensive range of foods in your diet. It will not only expand your palate but will also introduce you to dishes and ingredients that you might not have noticed before.
Many of us, by necessity, buy the same fruits and vegetables all year. By opting to consume what is in season, we can build a more well-rounded and healthy diet and reap many nutritional benefits.
By broadening your horizons to include more seasonal produce that you may or may not have tried before, you will gain access to more delicious food that is inexpensive and simple to prepare.
Out-of-season produce is not only harvested early, but it is also often contaminated to prolong its shelf life. Some food may contain pesticides, additives, and preservatives that will include the products to stay longer even if it’s not their season.
When buying fruits and vegetables from other countries, you never know what pesticides, herbicides, or fungicides they use. Many countries have lax regulations on using chemicals on fruits and vegetables, which some countries have prohibited due to their known harmful effects.
Furthermore, products imported from other countries are not a hundred percent fresh products. If the products contain chemicals that might harm you, you’ll suffer from the consequences that it brings to your body. However, eating foods in season is more likely healthy.
You can follow the principle of seasonal eating as closely or as loosely as you want, but the more you follow nature’s cycle, the better you’ll feel. And, if nothing else, seasonal eating is a smart way to get delicious food with a lower environmental impact and, in many cases, a lower financial impact.
Additionally, when you order products from a farmer, you have the opportunity to inquire about the farming and harvesting methods that they employ. You will learn a lot more about your food if you know where it comes from and who grew it.