‘Tis the season to eat healthily
Mince pies and Easter eggs might spring to mind when you think about seasonal foods but, as far as healthy eating is concerned, eating seasonally doesn’t mean indulging in the sugary options.
Eating seasonally is all about foods that are naturally ready for harvest at the same time of year as you are eating them. There are many health benefits to this which, if combined with physical activity, can help to reduce your risk of developing Type 2 diabetes.
So, what are the benefits of eating seasonally?
The less time our food takes to get from its harvest to your plate, the richer it is in vitamins and nutrients. These vitamins diminish if the food has to travel on a boat, plane or lorry to arrive in the UK – so reaching for a fresh strawberry in December or a parsnip in June might not be as nutritious as you think.
If you’ve ever nibbled a few blackberries while you picked them then you’ll know just how tasty and juicy they can be when at their freshest. Out of season fruit and vegetables can spend days or even weeks travelling to the shops. Quite often the foods are picked earlier than they should be so they ripen on-route to the UK – this means flavour and freshness are often compromised.
It saves you money
Eating seasonally is kind to your wallet as well as your body. Food sold out of season is more expensive because of the high costs of growing in forced conditions or transporting from another country.
It’s better for the environment
Food produced in the UK has less distance to travel before reaching the shops - a smaller carbon footprint can only be good for the planet.
It adds variety
As the seasons change so will your meals. You’ll need to be creative in the kitchen while you get used to only having certain foods available to use, but the benefits will be worth it.
It is very important to understand your risk of developing Type 2 diabetes. Our simple online health check takes just a few minutes. The Healthier You programme is free to join and you can sign up without visiting your GP. The sessions are now available with a British Sign Language Interpreter if BSL is your first or preferred language. https://www.stopdiabetes.co.uk/know-your-risk