Healthy Meals in a Snap
Much has been written in recent years about the benefits of eating locally grown foods. This is sometime referred to as the “locavore” movement. To be sure, locally grown foods do have some health benefits. Locally grown fruits and vegetables are usually left to ripen on the vine rather than being picked early so they can be transported. Also, farmers that know they will be selling locally tend to use fewer pesticides too.
The challenge for those with busy lives is taking the time to find, purchase and prepare locally grown foods. We often think of locally grown foods only being available at roadside stands, but that’s no longer true. Many supermarkets now stock locally grown fruits and vegetables, and independent restaurants many times use locally grown meat and poultry.
If you want to be part of the locavore movement, but think you don’t have the time, here are some tips:
Start out easy. You don’t have to make radical changes to your shopping. Try setting a goal of locally sourcing just one food each week, or even one each month. Any healthy change you make will be an improvement.
Buy in-season products. If you purchase products that are in-season for your location, you have a much better chance of buying locally-sourced foods. It should be a surprise to you that melons likely don’t grow in the northern states during the winter. They are trucked in from some other location.
Look for locavore products. Many supermarkets now stock locally grown foods. Check for signs in the market you normally shop at. And, don’t be afraid to ask the store manager about locally grown foods. They can point out the products they stock and they can often get other customer-requested products.
Try a health food market. Health food stores have come a long way. They don’t just sell tofu and granola. Stores like Whole Foods and Sprouts, that have made their reputation by stocking healthier products carry lots of locally grown foods, and they have great products that you just won’t find anywhere else too.
Check out a farmers market. Most big cities now have farmers markets. These are a great place to do your weekly shopping, since almost everything is locally grown.
Grow it yourself. You can get much closer to home than your own backyard. Vegetables are easy to grown in most locations and it can be fun. It’s also a great way to involve children in the process and help them learn about healthy food.
Almost anyone can eat more locally grown foods without spending more time shopping. So, join the locavore movement and you’ll be making healthy meals in a snap too!
Remember, healthy choices you make each day can transform your family for generations! What choices will you make today?
You may also want to read: Great Salads Make Healthy Meals, Quick, Healthy Grocery Shopping, “Shop” at the Market in Your Backyard