Fruits are delicious on their own, but they can also add intense flavor and color to smoothies, water, desserts, and meals. The benefits are endless. In order to get the most out of your fruits, try buying seasonal whenever you have the chance. Not only do you support local farmers but you get the full nutrients from an item because you are not biting into something that has been frozen, shipped or full of pesticides. But with modern day grocery stores, it seems like every fruit is in season all the time—so how can you figure out which is at its peak?
Before you plan your next meal, check out this seasonal fruit chart created by Shari’s Berries and inspire your next seasonal recipe. It has over 50 fruits by peak season!
Eat Your Fruits and Veggies
Studies show exactly why you should fill your plate with fruits and vegetables. Research shows that increased consumption of fruits and vegetables is associated with a decreased chance of developing a whole host of chronic diseases, like diabetes, cancer, dementia and even heart disease.
High concentrations of vitamins and minerals can reduce free radical damage, improve immunity and control inflammation. Higher amounts of fiber found in fruits and vegetables can also reduce the risk of chronic disease.
The recommended intake of four to five servings per day is considered enough if you are looking to prevent disease and chronic illness. People who follow this tend to be healthier with fewer health problems overall. They are less likely to have high blood pressure, high cholesterol and diabetes. They also tend to be non-smokers and be more physically active.
Healthy meal plan guidelines:
- Choose organic food whenever possible to avoid chemicals and genetically modified (GMO) foods
- Purchase local and fresh food (a good way to do this is to visit farmers’ markets)
- Eat healthy foods and fruits that are in season
- Have a good mix of cooked and raw foods in your diet
- Eat a variety of nutrient-rich foods