Niagara Gazette

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September 24, 2013

NATURAL HEALTH: Reap the benefits of eating seasonal foods

Niagara Gazette — Do you ever crave certain foods seasonally? If so, understand that this is a healthy signal from your body and if acted upon will help to nourish and protect you. 

This excludes cravings for cookies at Christmas, pumpkin pie at Thanksgiving and hot dogs on the Fourth of July, as I know some of you were thinking in this direction.

For centuries, Ayurvedic — a form of alternative medicine practice in India — practitioners as well as ancient Chinese herbal doctors have followed a diet of the seasons. Although logistical factors make this very dependent on where you live, your body does adjust to your climate and does tend to desire what it needs nutritionally based on the time of the year it is. 

If you don’t tend to crave fruits or vegetables in season — consider yourself broken. This will catch up with you eventually in the form of digestive disorders and degenerative diseases. Eat what is harvested locally in the present season, align yourself with nature and keep your body healthy.

In today’s world, you can virtually have any food at any time. Beneficial? Not necessarily. 

Ultimately, you are likely to pay a higher price for far inferior nutritional content when it is out of season. The longer the produce sits since harvesting and is in transportation, the more nutritionally depleted it becomes. 

Other countries have different regulations when it comes to the use of pesticides, so this is also something to consider. With the availability of foods year-round, many of us get stuck in a rut, eating the same foods over and over again. Eating seasonally brings us back to our roots, back to a simpler time when we ate what we had, and what we had came from a local farm. Eating local crops in season has a variety of benefits for your health, as well as perks for your local community, the economy and the environment.

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