Bauman College encourages a diet rich in S.O.U.L. (Seasonal, Organic, Unprocessed, Local) foods. With the bounty of the Thanksgiving harvest behind us, and the weather getting cooler every day, eating locally and seasonally may seem like a challenge. Not sure where to find local, seasonal produce in your neck of the woods? PickYourOwn.org is a great website where you can search for farms and farm stands that allow you to “pick your own” seasonal produce or purchase directly from the farmer.
So, what’s in season in December? We’re reaching the end of apple season, but clementines, carrots, winter squash, sweet potatoes, grapefruit, and persimmons can be found in abundance, and for good reason (California-Grown, n.d.). Do you notice that the produce section gets delightfully orange in the winter? Here’s why: Carotenoids are the plant pigments responsible for bright red, yellow, and orange hues in many fruits and vegetables. For example, beta-carotene, the carotenoid responsible for giving carrots their orange color, converts to vitamin A in the body, which is really important for your immune system. Citrus fruits are high in vitamin C, which also supports immunity during the winter months and aids in iron absorption in the body. It is preferable to get your daily dose of vitamin C from whole fruits and vegetables rather than supplements. For example, just one cup of orange slices meets 160% of your recommended daily value of vitamin C (Zelman, n.d.).
Certified Farmers’ Market – California Grown. “What’s in Season”. (n.d.). Retrieved on 12/05/16 from http://www.california-grown.com/PDFs/Whats-In-Season.pdf
Zelman, Kathleen M. “The Benefits of Vitamin C”. (n.d.). Retrieved on 12/06/16 from http://www.webmd.com/diet/features/the-benefits-of-vitamin-c