Everyone knows the importance of the two to five portions of fruit and vegetables per day, varying by type and color, but there is still too little talk of seasonality. Eating seasonal foods is first of all a responsible choice and secondly a real lifestyle. Choosing seasonal products means eating tasty but also protecting our wallets as well as our health and the environment. If, in addition to being seasonal, the fruit and vegetables we buy are also organic and km0, then we will have the guarantee of bringing fresh, safe and 100% natural products to the table. Let’s see the top 3 benefits of seasonal foods we might be aware of.
A cheaper choice
It is now possible to find all kinds of fruit and vegetables at any time of the year, but have you ever thought about how much the “first fruits” that we find on supermarket counters actually cost? Which of the first fruits, very often, have little or nothing. This surprising availability of products in fact implies a greater waste of resources which will inevitably be reflected in their final price.
Out of season fruits and vegetables are the product of greenhouse crops or crops on the other side of the world where climatic conditions are favorable for their growth. In the first case, the artificial heating of greenhouses requires a massive consumption of fossil fuels and in the second (there are some newer exceptions), however, it is necessary to face substantial costs of transport and storage (cold rooms). This is why a seasonal product will often cost less than a greenhouse-grown first fruit or a product arrived on our table after long and expensive journeys.
A delicious choice
Seasonal products are increasingly good, fragrant and fleshy. A tomato in winter will never taste the same as a sun-ripened summer tomato: choosing fresh naturally ripened fruit and vegetables will allow you to fully enjoy their taste.
But why can’t we say the same thing about an off-season or in-season product in another country that came to us after a days-long journey? The reason is precisely given by the fact that, in order to face transport, fruit and vegetables are harvested prematurely and therefore before they can fully develop their nutritional properties. It is no coincidence that we often say that a certain fruit does not taste like anything … or that it is too watery. Merit, indeed demerit, of some substances such as nitrogen fertilizer which leads to a substantial increase in the liquid part of the fruit / vegetable and therefore in its size to the detriment of flavor. If you have food allergies you might also notice that the affect is bigger when the food are harvested to soon.
A healthy choice
Not only more flavor, but also excellent nutritional properties. In fact, seasonal products guarantee the best of their properties and that is why eating in season also means eating healthy and in balance with the rhythms of nature. Furthermore, varying fruit and vegetables according to the seasons also means automatically diversifying the supply of vitamins and mineral salts that the body needs.
Ultimately, if consumed in the moment in which their natural ripening takes place, the products of the earth offer the maximum of their quality and their nutrients. As specified above, fruits and vegetables harvested before the natural end of their life cycle or outside their natural environment lose some of their properties. The same happens if there is a long time between the time of harvest and that of consumption: this is why it is always recommended to consume fresh fruit and vegetables to fully benefit from their vitamins.