Hooray!!! It's SUMMER!!!!! Possibly the only thing better than spending summer days out in the sun is sitting on a porch and listening to a summer thunderstorm (my apologies to anyone not from the South who doesn't know how magical they are). One of the other great things about summer time is the food! I'm a firm believer in eating foods based on when they naturally grow (aka when they are in season), and there are some pretty amazing foods in the Summer (I honestly don't think there is such a thing as too many peaches or raspberries)!
Eating seasonally can be very beneficial for your health because foods that are in season are richer in nutrients. In order to get foods that are not in season, they are typically flown in from areas where they are easier to grow. Because of the transportation process needed to get the food to your local grocery stores, most produce has to be harvested long before it is ripe, so it never develops its full nutritional potential or its proper flavor (not to mention all of the added chemicals, waxes, and preservatives they use to make the food look nice by the time it reaches your supermarket).
The great news is that eating seasonally is also good for your bank account! The simple concept of supply-and-demand states that as the supply of an item increases, the cost will go down. This is exactly what happens with food. Eating seasonally also typically means that you will be supporting your local farmers, which is something I highly encourage! Farm food is real food! You can check out a post I wrote about a farm I volunteered at in Austin here.
Another benefit of eating seasonally is that you will ensure that you are consuming a great variety of produce, and variety is a nutritionist's favorite word. If you actually eat the foods that are in season - every season, you can be sure that you will be eating a variety of fruits and vegetables throughout the entire year, and therefore maximizing your nutrient intake.
Because seasonally available food varies by region, I recommend using the Seasonal Food Guide to search for what foods grow in your state each month. Below I have included a list of just some of my favorite fruits and vegetables that are in season this Summer in Texas. For a more comprehensive list, see the link above.
Black Eyed Peas
Leeks (which always remind me of Paris)
Peaches (my favorite!!!)
Please comment below if you have any questions or comments!