This is Why You Should Be Eating Local
It is the season of farmers markets. Getting out in your local community and meeting your local farmers and entrepreneurs is not only fun, but has many other benefits as well.
Taste and Freshness
Local foods have to travel a shorter distance from the farm to your table. This means that they are going to be much fresher. When food has to travel thousands of miles, it either has to be frozen or is going to lose some of that freshness in the packing and transporting process. Additionally, fresher food is not only going to stay better longer but also taste much better. Imagine biting into an apple that was picked yesterday and then biting into an apple that was picked last week. Which one do you think will taste better? Now, I know what you might be thinking. How can you have farm fresh peaches if you don’t live in Georgia? It is actually very common for states to grow very diverse varies of fruits and vegetables. While I live in Kentucky and there are vast fields of corn, I can actually find fruits like blueberries, pears, potatoes and nectarines. You can check with your local community to see what is available near you and when they are in season. You may be surprised.
Nutrients 
In addition to losing taste and freshness over time, produce also loses nutrients. That apple that traveled several hundred miles isn’t going to have the same nutritional value as one grown in the orchard the next town over. I don’t know about you but I want to get the most out my food.
Safety
I am going to give you a task to complete. It has 15 steps. I am also going to give you a second task to complete. This task only has 3 steps. Which task do you think will have more of an opportunity for error? It is the same concept as with transportation of our food. Food that is imported from other areas undergoes several steps from the time it leaves the field to the time it makes it to your table. Local foods usually have a significantly less complex transportation from the field to your table. There is much less room for mistakes to be made, making local foods a safer option. Not only that, but if you buy from a local farmer, chances are he can tell you every step that apple went through from the time it was picked to the time you buy it including when it was picked, where, and how it was cleaned and transported.
Supports Local Economies
This isn’t a health benefit per say. However, supporting your local economy is extremely important. Many people avoid farmer’s markets because they worry the produce is more expensive (which is typically a misconception). Not only are you going to get fresher, tastier, healthier, and safer food for your money, but that money is also going to go back into your local economy supporting local businesses, schools, and services that you use every day. I would rather have my money help my local farms than some farm far away that I never even heard of.
  
  

Amanda grew up in the suburbs of Chicago, IL but is now enjoying living in Louisville, KY. She received her bachelors degree at Northern Illinois University where she acted as a resident advisor and mentor to fellow students. This was where she found her passion for wellness and helping others. She went on to study community health and receive her Masters of Education at the University of Louisville. During her studies, she focused her graduate research on programming for mental health and youth wellness. She also acts as an advocate for mental health and suicide prevention. She has always enjoyed using her voice and knowledge to educate and advocate about important health topics. Amanda spends much of her time employed as a nanny for three wonderful children.

When she is not busy promoting health education or chasing around the kids, she enjoys spending time with family and friends, playing with her Pomeranian, Sulley, or indulging in a great book. Amanda thrives on helping to educate others about important health issues and effective health related behaviors so they can live happier and healthier lives!