Updated: Apr 27, 2018
Our bodies naturally crave foods that are in-season. Learn about which foods will help you thrive and keep warm this winter while also reducing the negative impact on our environment.
Ah, the convenience of having every fruit and vegetable you desire in your local supermarket year-round. It's nice to have some fresh avocados, ripe red organic tomatoes, and some grilled zucchini for your eating pleasures, but have you ever wondered what exactly your body really needs during the winter months? Turns out, our bodies actually thrive on foods that are in season! By eating local, in-season, organic foods, you not only boost your immune system, but you also leave less of a carbon footprint.
“Seasonal and local foods have to travel much shorter distances than non-local fruits and vegetables, which sometimes need to travel well over 1,000 miles to get to our local supermarkets. Seasonal foods are also a lot less likely to contain harsh pesticides and chemicals compared to foods that are not in-season. Foods that have been picked too early and travel long distances won’t look as appealing compared to the seasonal ones that grew naturally, and out-of-season vegetables often contain chemical ripening agents, wax coatings, and other toxic preservatives (yuck!). Seasonal eating is great for your body and for the environment!"
During the colder months, think hearty, warm, spicy, savory and balanced. Foods such as radishes, carrots, sweet potatoes, beets, and other root vegetables help keep your immune system strong and your body (and soul) warm during with winter. Using spices such as cinnamon, cardamom, turmeric, ginger, cumin, black pepper and fennel seeds also offer immune boosting powers! Add these to your recipes this winter to achieve a healthy boost of nutrition to help you power through the cold months and get you ready for spring time!
More Winter Foods to Focus On
Hurray! Fruit is available in the winter, but they are mostly going to consist of fruits in the citrus family such as; lemons, oranges, grapefruit, kumquat, blood oranges, and clementines. Most of these fruits are in season from October to March. Add them to your morning breakfast routine, add them to smoothies, or even munch on them as an afternoon snack!
Vegetables are actually quite abundant during the winter months. Some winter produce that are great for cold-weather recipes include: cabbage, brussel sprouts, winter squash, butternut squash, sweet potatoes, onions, beets, carrots, turnips, rutabagas, parsnips, and radicchio. When using these vegetables, think stews, soups, bakes, and crock pot recipes.