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Wednesday, March 20, 2013

Why eat seasonal fruit

Eating strawberries or cherries in December is a small but expensive luxury brought to us by development. Nothing is better for the soul then smell the summer through the out of season fruit, it's like a beach walk in a hot day.
But nature is always right, and we don't have cherries in December for a reason. 
We can eat cherries all year but there is a reason that cherries grow on spring/summer and not in December. Past generation lived in tune with season, knew all the natural cycles and ate what the land gave them, was unthinkable eating persimmons in August or figs in March. Many things were conserved in several ways, primarily by cold, to be available all year, but these were limited resources.

Today we have at our disposal all we want, when we want, like we want. I even think that satisfying pregnant women wishes with never ending trips is now a myth, all we need to do is going to the market.


But eating season fruit and vegetables bring advantages to the health, the planet and to economy.
Some of the products we eat are brought from the other side of the world, some of them are season products there but they are out of season here. As a result they are picked green so they can ripe during the trip. This fact makes the fruit and vegetables poor in nutrients, the formation of sugar is linked to the sun exposure, and the vitamins are very degradable in this conditions.  

Scientists from Consumers Association of Austria confirmed that vegetables picked and frozen at the right season are richer in nutrients than the ones that were transported off-season! in http://bodyecology.com/articles/benefits_in_season.php

Of course we can not be extremists, not everyone has the opportunity to eat fruit "directly from the tree" or pick carrots "directly from the soil," it is clear that without the greenhouses we could not produce food for all inhabitants of the planet (even with them is hard)
Another important concept is food manipulation, this is just one more tool we can use to feed people, perhaps without it we would never be able to feed half of the people we are feeding now, in most of the cases most of us confuse manipulation with selection, both are valid, both are important, and both bring food to your table.
Some parts of the process we can't control, but we can try to assume control on the last bit of the process: What to buy, when to buy, and how to buy. 

Eat only 2 to 3 fruit pieces a day, fruit is rich in fructose, fructose is sugar, more then 3 pieces will mean you are ingesting to many sugar. Eating seasonal fruit is more satisfying, the fruit is sweeter, fresh and the body asks for it. It's no accident that nature produces cherries on spring and persimmons on fall, there's always a reason, for example a evolutionary reason related with the nutritional necessities of the all animals during the different seasons.


The fruits/vegetables season table is different for each globe zone, the one here is for the US territory, other tables can be found all over the internet:


Making children eat fruit and not cake as a snack, even if the fruit is out of season looks like a good habit and strategy, with more benefits then losses.

Et voil√°!
Eat your vegetables... on season! its cheaper and tasteful!

Enjoy!

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