Stay Healthy During Every Season with Seasonal Foods
Eating seasonal foods is good for the environment. It ensures that produce is fresh and local. As seasons change there are different produce items that go in and out of season. When you eat foods that are in season you get to enjoy their taste, price, and nutrients.
Benefits of Eating Seasonally
Foods that are in season taste better and have the highest levels of flavors and nutrition. Seasonal produce is cheaper because it is from local sources and doesn't have to travel far. Local foods are also harvested in large batches when ripe, so they are in abundance. Local produce reduces pollution caused by trucks traveling long distances with imported produce. Produce is often treated with chemicals when transported from one location to another. This process helps preserve shelf life, though is not ideal for consumption. By consuming foods that are grown near your home or in your own garden, you can avoid tainted produce. Many unknown elements can come into contact with produce when transporting it overseas. Produce that comes from overseas may have been grown in untested or contaminated soil. Seasonal foods tend to correlate to what your body needs during certain seasons. During the winter season, people tend to lack vitamin C. Winter is also when citrus fruits are in season. Citrus fruits contain lots of vitamin C, it’s as if mother nature has a plan for us. So what’s in season in February? Great question!
Foods in Season During February and Their Benefits
This leafy-green contains vitamin K, which supports bone health and regulates blood. Arugula is a high antioxidant food that prevents cell damage and supports eye health. Use it as grain replacement in your diet instead of a bread bun or pasta to help promote weight loss. It's never too soon to start adding it to your diet, with its peppery taste you are sure to enjoy it!
Beets are great for boosting the immune system. They are high in vitamin C and may help lower your blood sugar. Beets also assist in the detoxifications by contributing to healthy blood and liver.
Broccoli, those tiny trees should be an addition to your diet right away if you’re trying to eat healthier. Broccoli contains antioxidants that can help fight skin damage. It also contains vitamin C, which helps boost immunity. Broccoli can even contribute to proper digestion and internal health.
One cup of cauliflower provides more nutrients than you can image. All those nutrients come with extensive benefits. Cauliflower contains large amounts of vitamin C, good for fighting inflammation. Indole-3-carbinol is a compound found in cauliflower also has anti-inflammatory properties. Cauliflower contains omega-3 which helps lower the chances of heart disease. It may also be able to regulate hormones and keep them at healthy levels.
Carrots are one of the most popular vegetables in the US. Luckily, they are super nutritious and easy to come by. They can help lower blood pressure because of their high potassium content. Carrots also have fiber, making them a good component in the digestive process.
Low in calories, high in nutrients- you should find a way to get more kale in your diet. Kale has more iron per calorie than a steak does. Iron is great because it helps move oxygen around your body and supporting cell growth. Kale is also great for cardiovascular support, which may prevent heart disease.
Adding lemons to your water tastes great and also has health benefits. Lemons can help with indigestion and constipation by helping to increase peristalsis. They also have strong antibacterial properties, which kill bacteria in the body.
These juicy fruits are great if you need some help with digestion. They have 18% of your daily fiber intake preventing constipation and regulating digestion. Antioxidants in pears fight free radicals that may cause damage to your cells. Pears also contain high levels of copper and iron, which can help to speed up your body’s healing process.
These celery-stalk like vegetables are quite sour despite their appearance. Rhubarb is often prepared with honey or served as a preserve with fruit. This vegetable has 45% of the daily value of vitamin K. Vitamin K is good for bone health and supports brain function. Another vitamin at work here is vitamin A, it supports skin health and mucous membranes.
All these foods are in season now and have benefits that your body will be happy to receive. What better way to enjoy the changing season than with new recipes and new ingredients. Working with seasonal fruits and vegetables is a great way to spend time in the kitchen. Use this time to bond with yourself for some me-time, or with family. You can have fun experimenting with new recipes while creating new dishes to share.
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