Eat Fresh? Eat local? Eat organic? It’s November and currently I live in MN and I am NOT a fan of root vegetables (except beets!!!). So what is a girl to do? Besides move to the tropics and eat all of the locally grown, organic fresh fruits and vegetables she can?
A few things you may want to consider …
Organic food is grown on farms committed to environmentally friendly agricultural methods. In order to label produce as organic, these farms must meet government standards. However, when organic food travels long distances to market – travel known as food miles – it creates pollution that sometimes outweighs the positive environmental effects of organic farming.
Alternatively, food grown locally is fresh and seasonal. If you’ve ever had a vegetable garden, you know that the best foods are the ones that don’t sit on a shelf waiting for you to eat them. Buying local food also allows you to help your community’s economy and helps reduce the environmental costs associated with food miles. However, local food is not necessarily grown with organic methods.
Once again – ugggg??? Here are two tips you may want to consider.
Use the Dirty Dozen. For the foods that top the list, make sure you go organic, even if it means you can’t do local. For those that tend to hold on to less residue, like those on the Clean 15 list, stick to local, even if it’s not organic.
Consider the volume. The amount you’re eating matters. So if you’re eating an apple every day, for example, you’d better buy the organic bag. If it’s not something you’re eating a lot of, I wouldn’t get yourself too crazy about it.
So – do I still use bananas in my smoothies every morning? Yep! Are they organic? Mostly – although they are not on the Dirty Dozen. Do I worry about the food miles? Sometimes. Just being honest. It is a hard balance in providing my body (and taste buds) with what they need and saving the earth at breakfast.
Do you have any suggestions for how you balance fresh, organic and local? I would love to hear your thoughts.