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What are the benefits of local food?

Manuel Villacorta
Nutrition & Dietetics
When you eat locally grown food you are more likely to consume a seasonal diet. This will nourish your body with a variety of nutrients that will change as the season changes. As you have probably heard before -- it is best to eat all of the colors of the rainbow, and eating locally can help you do that. After all, isn't variety the spice of life?

While eating locally you will also consume more whole foods, which is a great health benefit. An apple and light cheese will nourish your body much more than a processed pre-packaged energy bar. 

The pesticide level and packing material are often minimized as well.
The benefits of eating locally grown food are price and taste. Eating locally grown food will help stretch your produce food dollar. While price is an important consideration among gardeners, the number one motivator and driving force for home gardening is taste. As most local gardeners already know, nothing tastes more delicious than a ripe, summer tomato plucked right out of your backyard garden or grown at a local farm. 

From a savings standpoint, since the fruits and veggies have not incurred the additional fuel, shipping, and packaging costs to transport them great distances to be sold, these cost savings can be passed on to the consumer.

For more on the benefits of local foods, see my blog at: http://www.boston.com/lifestyle/health/blog/nutrition/2012/06/produce_on_the_cheap_local_far.html

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.