Every one of us spends a good amount of money on food and finding the best and freshest foods to fuel and sustain our lives. However, it’s undeniably smart to invest in good food that is full of nutritional value. Whenever possible, spending the same amount of money that we would on imported foods could be even better spent when supporting local farmers. Keeping your dollar spend local and benefiting your regional economy effectively comes back and supports you and your family overtime. Produce grown by local farmers is usually fresher and without many of the pesticides and preservatives that might be applied to fruits and fall vegetables, and it usually tastes better too.
If more people were to skip the big box supermarkets and buy into the movement towards community supported agriculture, it would be very beneficial. There has been real progress in that regard, and that’s best exampled with the greater numbers of local farmer’s markets that are seen in cities across North America during the summertime. But once summer draws to a close, as it has now, there is still plenty in the way of fall vegetables that are just as highly recommended as the ones seen at summer farmer’s markets. Many can also be ones that are conducive to boosting your metabolism too.
Alongside all the benefits that come from eating more healthily, there’s also a reciprocal benefit in all of this too if you’re also a business owner in your community. Buy your fruits and vegetables from local farmers and those same farmers will be spending more in the community, which benefits all of you. Plus, if you’re relying on vitamins and other supplements to make up shortcomings in your diet you can get much more of those essential nutrients by eating fruits and vegetables that do NOT travel hundreds of kilometers before they end up in front of you on the shelves.
Seasonal eating means focusing on in-season fruits and vegetables, and what that means is eating ones that grow naturally in the soil in your part of the world at that time of the year. The reasons that people should eat more seasonal and local produce vary and cover both ends of the individual and collective spectrum. When it comes to what’s in it for you, first and foremost there is that locally-grown seasonal fruits and vegetables nearly always taste better. It’s natural to prefer vegetables that taste better too, but when it comes to being extremely flavorful fresh fruit is absolutely where it’s at.
Everyone has their favorites, but if you ask me there’s nothing better than biting into an in-season peach in summertime. And another thing to keep in mind with locally grown fruit and vegetables is that you nearly always get much more in the way of vitamins and minerals from them. This is especially true if they’re grown in good quality soil, and there are areas of North American that have higher quality fertile soil for growing crops and fall vegetables than most other areas of the world. So people in the USA and Canada are already very fortunate in that regard.
So, what’s in it for the larger collective then? That’s also an easy answer. A large part of the reason the world is facing the climate crisis it is these days is because of greenhouse gas emissions, and the #1 source of them is from burning fossil fuels in internal combustion engines. When fruits and vegetables need to be transported across huge distances to end up at your supermarket, there’s a LOT of trucking involved, and those large vehicles produce an enormous amount of exhaust.
Community supported agriculture is so much better for you and for the planet.
There are all sorts of different angles we could take in explaining why fall vegetables, and especially those that are grown locally, are what you should be eating at this time of the year. We could keep it simple and say that acorn squash or butternut squash is surprisingly tasty and a bountiful source of beta-carotene, which is excellent for brain health and also contributes to prevention of cancer and heart disease. Eating foods like these and other fall vegetables can also help you to lower harmful LDL cholesterol levels.
Even if you tend to have a more basic palate, you’ll likely find all these tastes better and adding new ingredients to your basket is even more fun when freshly picked up from a local farmers market in your area. Quite often these events have other types of natural and organic products too and sometimes there will be local entertainers and kiosks there too. It’s an enjoyable way to spend a part of your afternoon, mostly in the fall when some of your favorite summer activities can no longer be enjoyed.