Hayes: Farmers' market can help you go green in your diet
Memory lane has many fond thoughts of gooey, sticky, sweet treats awaiting my taste buds. I can recall demanding the last Popsicle in the freezer and lamenting to my mother: “Do I have to eat my vegetables?”
Fast forward to a mature palate and those vegetables that I despised as a child are now a staple in my refrigerator. My favorite foods today differ from my favorites as a child. But now I believe that if I am craving a specific type of food, such as broccoli, that my body is trying to tell me something as well.
I might need magnesium, found in raw nuts, seeds, legumes and fruits, if I have a craving for chocolate. Or a hankering for oily fatty foods, such as potato chips, could be your body saying feed me calcium, found in turnip greens, broccoli, kale, legumes, cheese and sesame.
We are fortunate to have many shopping choices in our town; our grocers carry a multitude of vegetables and fruits. If your palate is telling you fresh food is the way to go and your pocketbook is pinched, then the Sedalia Area Farmers’ Market is the place to go.
Have you ever tasted fresh broccoli? I think it is superior in taste to frozen or trucked; for me there is a discernable difference in taste and longevity of all fresh food. Many of us who grew up in the country are familiar with fresh food, and enjoy keeping our fresh produce for an extended time.
Many dietitians say the first place to start improving your health is by increasing your intake of green vegetables. Green vegetables are without a doubt the primary food group lacking most often in people’s diets. (OK, I know that technically green vegetables are not classified as a food group of their own, but they really should be — they are that important.)
Why are green vegetables so vital to our health? They nourish and strengthen our blood and immune system. They boost energy levels, and they are loaded with fiber, folic acid, chlorophyll, flavonoids, micronutrients and phyto-chemicals. I also think they help to clear congestion, improve liver and kidney function and improve circulation. Even if only one of these benefits interests you, it is worth it to add more of these powerhouses to your diet.
I have been surprised at how my tastes have changed, and you might be too. Fresh food is a wise bet for better health and can be found at the Sedalia Area Farmers’ Market located inside the Missouri State Fairgrounds. The market’s mission is to provide the citizens of our fair town (pun intended) the freshest possible local food.
The market is open from 3 to 6 p.m. Tuesdays and 3 to 7 p.m. Fridays. Stop by and see if fresh food becomes your favorite food.
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