Photo by Gabriel Gurrola on Unsplash
As we gently move away from the warming soups and one pot wonders of winter towards the green, cooling salads of summer, it has got me thinking about the importance of eating locally grown food. So, as we nurture our bodies with foods which aid detoxification at this time of year, let’s start a conversation around what we’re putting in our mouths - why we should care about how these foods nourish us or wreak havoc inside and why caring about where our food comes from, goes hand in hand with caring for ourselves and our environment.
How it benefits our bodies…
One of the many ailments we have inflicted upon ourselves in modern society is one of disassociation with our own bodies. Eating locally grown and produced food is one way of re-establishing this connection. When we commit to eating locally, we also commit to eating seasonally. Seasonal eating is currently at the forefront of many cookbooks and dietary advice, but its proven benefits are far from recent.
As hunters and gatherers, we ate what the earth provided us with which changed depending on the time of year. In winter, the earth provides us with citrus fruits - high in Vitamin C - to ward off colds and flus typical of those frostier months. In summer, stoned fruit provides us with extra beta-carotenes for sun protection.
What once seemed such a simple concept has been thrown into chaos with supermarkets providing us with an array of choice all year round. The convenience of these developments cannot be understated but ease does not always relate to optimum nourishment.
How it benefits our community…
With our fast-paced modern lives, sense of community – which used to be at the forefront of our being – has been pushed aside and in its place lies convenience and technology.
Meeting and conversing with the people who grow your vegetables is hugely beneficial in creating and sustaining community in our modern society. Not only are you nourishing yourself with food which is grown in your country – not lying in plastic for days/weeks before reaching your mouth – you are also helping to sustain small, ethical businesses and farms. Furthermore, taking the time out of a busy Saturday to venture to your local market, to converse with locals and collect your grubby, delicious vegetables can become a hugely beneficial part of your week.
How it benefits the environment…
By eating locally, we are re-establishing our balance with Mother nature. In doing so, we ensure a reduced air mileage, and less fumes being emitted into the atmosphere. Locally produced foods generally use less packaging and plastics as they don’t need to preserve their produce. Less packaging means less waste!
Eating locally/seasonally also reduces the total number of possible chemicals which may contaminate your food on its way to you – such as pesticides and GMO’s, to preserve or enhance the produce.
By investing in local, sustainable farms, you are taking part in ensuring that the precious soil and land which grows your food remains secured for that purpose, rather than being bought for housing development.
Taking the decision to move away from convenience towards earthy, local wholefoods is not always an easy or cheap one but the more you sew the seed of knowledge surrounding how eating locally benefits you – nourishment for body and mind, investment in community, respect and love for mother nature – the more difficult it will be to deny yourself the abundance this way of eating, and living, offer.
If you’re keen to dig in but don’t know where to start, why not check out these beautiful local options:
If you’re a busy bee and struggle to squeeze in a market visit…welcome to the wonderful world of veg boxes! These are delivered right to your door and provide you with local, seasonal fruit & veg minus the hassle:
There is a focus on connection with eating locally – connection to yourself; listening to what nourishment your body requires, connection to your community; support and love for those around you, and connection to the environment; being present and aware of where your food comes from, who it comes from and how that process affects mother nature.
To find out more about the therapies, classes and workshops we offer feel free to give The Healthy Life Centre a call on 0131 229 0724 or pop in and have a chat with us.