Eating organic isn’t that difficult
Posted: Thursday, May 1, 2014 12:30 am
By Tessa Edick
For Columbia-Greene Media
If you think that organic farm fresh food is expensive and not easy to source — think again. What is good health worth to you? What does eating local food in season do for the environment, your community and economic development?
Make sourcing food as much an adventure as cooking and feeding a pleasure. A food nation based on convenience isn’t very convenient actually. We are sick fat and tired. Skip the diets, supplements, vitamins and a crazy workout schedule.
Here’s the secret to good health — nutrition and activity. Everyday connect with nature in some form — food or exercise from a natural source will keep you looking and feeling great. How do I know? It’s my lifestyle and I consciously practice it everyday and pay it forward by buying good food from people I know.
I trust farmers and rely on their hard work to feed me. I read labels and ask questions. I seek out local food because it honors the farmer who makes it, it tastes better, it’s better for me and everyone benefits from food choices that are based in quality and best practices and yield nutrient dense food to eat.
Timing is perfect to change the way you eat and stand up for your farming community simply with your food choices. And all you have to do is shift how you shop for food.
Look up a farmers market near you, join a csa (community supported agriculture) from a local farm and support them with your “seed” money to sustain their business or event connect to seed and soil by planting a few seeds to grow something you can eat. Reward yourself with quality local food that serves you well, leaves you satisfied and is medicine for the mind, body and soul.
Is it really so hard to make food choices that impact wellness? Is it really so inconvenient to shift your purchasing patterns if the return on the investment is so valuable?
If every single one of us made a commitment every single day to eat even just one local ingredient in one meal a day what would happen?
Eggs, produce, fruit, chicken, grain, meat or dairy — pick one a day in any given meal and be sure it’s from a family farm that works hard to feed you well and is rewarded by your support.
Informed food choices keep you utilizing nutrition to maximize health. Why wouldn’t you if you value a long and healthy life and a vibrant community? It’s actually a pleasure.
Here’s the deal.
CONVENIENCE AND ACCESS
Supermarkets are filled with fraudulent offers. If you can’t read it — don’t eat it. We don’t know where it’s made, who made it, how it was grown or what it ate? We don’t know the meaning of fresh, all natural, homegrown, homemade, real fruit, more fiber, low fat, low sodium or sugar free. We are tricked by Madison Avenue claims and advertising while we are poisoned for profits. The big business of food prevails with big money instilling fear that we won’t have enough food if it isn’t processed and laden with pesticides. As a result America is getting fatter, sicker and more disconnected from nutrition and wellness. Do you even know where your food comes from?
INCONVENIENCE. It’s not easy.
Yes it is — if you value your health!
Take responsibility for what you eat and give clear demand for what you want to eat every time you purchase food.
In this timely food climate with major food press about commitments to health and wellness by not selling cigarettes, removing preservatives, chemicals, additives, GMO concerns and just label it mandates — seek out three things: Quality, transparency and responsibility of both the producer and the consumer.
Meet your farmer. Eat local and opt out of processed food. Think of organic as quality food that offers a clear understanding of how it’s made and best practices used to ensure that good food.
Organic may cost more until demand and supply are in balance but why do you demand cheap food? If you are cheap with your food you are cheating your health. What would you pay to feel better when you are sick? What would you pay to be fit and trim, sleep well or have energy? What would you pay to look and feel great? What does health care cost? Or a day off of work? Or a sick kid? What does junk food really cost and what do you gain but weight? Isn’t it easier to pay forward with better food that makes you healthy and well? Is it really expensive to eat right? And aren’t you worth it?
ONE SOLUTION IS CONNECTION.
Ask questions — who makes the food and how?
Research what you eat. It’s not hard to Google. We seek out information everyday – why wouldn’t we inform ourselves about what goes into our bodies if we want to look and feel great!
Use the 70/30 rule. Seventy percent of the time eat local, healthy nutrient dense food.
Look for meaningful claims about what you eat: No preservatives, additives or pesticides. Organic. Grass Fed. Local. The fresher it is the more nutrition — the better your body optimizes and is healthy, fit and energized.
Everyday buy one locally made ingredient! Whether milk, cheese, vegetable, fruit meat or poultry, it will taste better, you will tell someone and it will positively impact your health and the health of your community and the planet. Simply ask — which farm is it from? Takes 60 seconds longer to ask and 60 cents more to eat better.
Eat in season! Shop farmers market or look for in-season local and organic fruits and vegetables at the grocery store. If they come from down the road and don’t have pesticides — they will have more nutrition and taste better, especially if you haven’t had them all year long!
Meet your Farmer! If you don’t want to grow your own food (a great learning experience for kids!) then visit a local farmer and meet the person who will provide you with food. They will explain the differences in your food choices and sources and the benefits of buying direct.
Use common sense: Think about everything you put in your mouth and instead of instant flavor sensation – ask how do I benefit eating this food? If it is immediate gratification you will pay for it some how — typically how you look or how you feel. Treat your body like you respect it and eat food as fuel — for nutrition and wellness.
Invest in your food choices: Put your mind and your money where your mouth is! If health were revered as wealth, you would invest in food choices differently. It’s worth eating local or organic — and choose fair trade. Join a CSA and save. Ask your farmer to work with you on pricing and invest in the locavore lifestyle. Start asking — where does my food come from and how do I honor my body by eating?
Understand sustainability: Opt out of processed food and embrace the capacity to endure. It’s the long-term maintenance of well-being. Eating local food that exists in a system that connects us to the land, the soil, the seed, the air, the animals, people and places and fosters community, commerce and compliance brings viable livelihoods and profitability to farms — essential for small and mid-size family farms to survive and thrive. It makes communities stronger, kids smarter and the environment better — all from eating good food that tastes great.
Forget about the cost and don’t swap nutrition for convenience — pay forward with good food choices and invest in your health. Good food changes lives. A connection to your family farm will too. FarmOn!
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