Isn’t it funny how mother nature provides us with everything we need to be well?
Eating seasonally is really important, and something we should all be doing. When you see a certain food in the supermarket that isn’t in season, it raises a few questions – how far has this food had to travel to be available to us this time of year? Has it had to be sprayed/coated with anything to keep it in such great shape knowing the distance it has travelled? How large a carbon footprint has this food created just to appease our tastebuds?
These scenarios can’t be good for us, or for our environment. Something has had to suffer for us to enjoy a food that shouldn’t be available to us – the carbon footprint, the nutritional status, and/or the vitality and taste.
Eating seasonally means the produce you are consuming is at its most vital state; meaning the nutrients are at an all-time high. Not to mention cheaper as they won’t have had as far to travel to reach our home.
It also means you are in line with the environment around you. You know how mother nature provides us with everything we need? Well, she really has our back. We are slowly but surely coming into winter; a time for colds and flus to run rampant.
Let’s take a quick look at what foods are currently in season:
Kiwifruit, beetroot, bok choy, broccoli, carrots, capsicum, grapefruit, pumpkin, paw paw, lemons, oranges, fennel, leek, rhubarb, turnips, silverbeet, zucchini and tomatoes.
Would you like to know what all of these foods are really high in? VITAMIN C. Perfect timing really, isn’t it?
Vitamin C plays a huge role in supporting immune function. Not only is vitamin C antiviral, but it stimulates T lymphocyte and B lymphocyte proliferation (these are our soldiers that fight infection). Vitamin C stimulates our natural killer cell activity, reduces histamine and has a mucolytic effect (expels excess mucous), just to name a few.
Garlic, nature’s antibiotic, is also in season. It’s antibacterial, antiviral and antimicrobial. It has been shown in countless clinical studies to reduce the severity of cold and flu symptoms as well as work preventatively.
Lastly, mushrooms are also in season right now. Mushrooms have huge medicinal properties. They are immune modulating, antibacterial, antiviral and anticancer.
When doing your next grocery shop think about the foods that are currently in season and try to make them the staples in your diet. Not only will they taste better, but you will be using food as medicine to its highest capacity to protect against the inevitable cold and flu season.
Stuck for ideas? Here’s a few meal ideas that we’ll be cooking up:
- Healthy apple and rhubarb crumble
- Garlic, potato and leek soup
- Strawberries on your cereal, in your smoothie
- Lemon, garlic and olive oil as a dressing
- Roasted pumpkin, carrots, turnips and tomatoes with fennel using the above salad dressing
- Fresh juice; orange, lemon, carrot, grapefruit, silverbeet
- Warming mushroom curry with chopped greens
Happy shopping and happy cooking!