I’m sure you’ve heard people say “support local” and “eat organic”; But, do you ever wonder why? Besides the obvious, which is that it’s amazing to know exactly where and who your food came from, or that you know your money is going back into our local economy, local and organic produce will also do wonders for your health.
The conventional food industry is concentrated on making a profit which leads to a focus on yield, size, firmness, disease or pest resistance, heat tolerance, as well as appearance. Notice how flavour and nutrient content aren’t on this list? It seems as though the concern for profit has completely outweighed the concern for our health and the health of the planet. Pesticides, bleaches, gas to ripen our produce, food waxes for preservation, as well as chemicals and hormones pumped into animals are just a few of the things added to our food that aren’t even required to be listed on food labels. Environmental Working Group (EWG) released their 2021 “Dirty Dozen” list as the shopper’s guide to understanding pesticides in produce. Take a look at their research here: https://www.ewg.org/foodnews/summary.php. Pollutants in our food are not only difficult for our bodies to process, but also detrimental to the health of our earth. Regular exposure to these pollutants and additives, in even small amounts, can over time lead to chronic illnesses and harm your body. So what can we do? It’s time to take responsibility for your health and learn more about nutrition.
Ecological Farming has an amazing impact on our health and nutrition. Traditional or ecological farms are organic, and usually small scale. They practice crop rotation, use few to no chemicals and are a sustainable ecological system that generates fewer external impacts. Crops are rotated to support healthy and nourished soil, changing up the micro environment which therefore protects from disease, harmful insects and pests. Eating organic food, without the use of chemicals, not only strengthens the soil, but it’s also better tasting, reduces pollution, preserves biodiversity and helps you avoid any extra unwanted hormones. So we get why we want organic, but why is local important? Eating something that has been freshly picked will ensure that you’re getting the most energy, vitality and nutrients per calorie. Local food that is seasonal keeps your body attuned to the earth and the different cycles of nature. As the seasons change, so does your body's needs and wants. Think about your cravings for a yummy fruit salad in the summer months and a hearty warm soup throughout the winter; Your body is smart and knows exactly what it needs!
As you can see, there are many benefits to supporting local and ecological farms. It is very exciting to see an increase in the demand for them, as well as a rise in the accessibility of information on ecological techniques. Reach out to your local farmers and ask questions so that you can begin to take your health and nutrition into your own hands!
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