Why Local + Local Favorites

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Wow…where does the time go! It’s been almost a week already since the Local Favorites class in Highlands Ranch. I absolutely love sharing delicious and healthy food in the form of recipes, but it’s even more exciting when I actually get to share food in person during a tasting session! You can imagine my excitement when Whole Foods Market Denver South (Highlands Ranch & South Glenn locations) reached out to me to see if I wanted to host a class on local foods. Yes – yes – and yes!

I know scheduling conflicts can make it difficult to get to various events, therefore, I thought I’d share some key points on the importance of eating local foods as well as some of the tasty food we sampled!

What’s the deal with eating local anyway…here are a few important reasons to enjoy local foods everyday! (source)

Local food typically is more fresh, full of flavor and has more nutrients. 

  • When grown locally, the crops are picked at their peak of ripeness versus being harvested early in order to be shipped and distributed to your local retail store.
  • Local food has a shorter time between harvest and your table, and it is less likely that the nutrient value has decreased.
  • Much of the time, produce contains more nutrients when allowed to ripen naturally on the parent plant.
  • Sustainably produced food also means less (or no) agricultural chemicals (such as pesticides), antibiotics,  and hormones, all of which are common in conventional farm products.
  • Conventional food is estimated to typically travel between 1,500 and 3,000 miles to reach the consumer and usually requires additional packaging and refrigeration.
  • Since they are harvested and sold more quickly, there is less chance that they require the preservatives that are added to products shipped long distances and placed in storage.
  • Meat from animals raised sustainably on pasture is also more nutritious – for example, grass-fed beef is higher in “good” cholesterol, higher in vitamins A and E, lower in fat, and contains more antioxidants than factory farmed beef.

Eating local food is eating seasonally. 

  • Local produce that is seasonal is full of flavor and tastes better than those fruits and veggies that have traveled thousands of miles and picked before they were ripe.
  • Often you get better price when produce is in seasons…check your local grocery store for various sales or shop the local Farmer’s Market in your area.

Local food supports the local economy. 

  • The money that is spent with local farmers and growers stays close to home and is reinvested with businesses and services in your community.

 Local food benefits the environment.

  • By purchasing locally grown foods you help maintain farmland and green and/or open space in your community. Recall the number of miles that conventional foods often travel as well as the extra packaging and refrigeration required.

Local foods promote a safer food supply. 

  • More steps in the process means more risk of safety issues at different points.
  • Food grown in distant locations has the potential for food safety issues at harvesting, washing, shipping and distribution.
  • Tracing outbreaks of foodborne illnesses also becomes more difficult.

Local growers can tell you how the food was grown and you strengthen your community.

  • You can ask what practices growers use to raise and harvest the crops. When you know where your food comes from and who grew it, you know a lot more about that food.
  • Talking to the grower and their family creates community and strengthens relationships.

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Now here are some favorites from the tasting…

Chicken Cabbage Rolls (recipe to come soon) with local chicken, Spinelli’s Marinara Sauce, and Haystack Mountain Smoked Goat Cheese

Evol Burritos & Sandwiches

Green Summer Smoothie (recipe to come soon) with local Palisade peaches

Keen One Quinoa

Alpine Avocado Vinaigrette 

Hope Hummus with local cucumber slices

Poparuba Cake Bites

Simply Dara Raw Balls

Corvus Coffee, Pressery Juices, and High Country Kombucha

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I will be sharing new foods at the upcoming Local Favorites class in August so make sure to sign up by emailing liz@elizabethdennison.com or calling 720-722-0246…it’ll be delicious I promise! 🙂 Interested in learning more about my services as a health coach or wondering if a Detox is right for you, let’s chat! Sign up for your FREE Jumpstart Session and let’s get started!! Make sure to sign up for my newslettertoo (at top of page) as I will be doing a couple of upcoming events this summer and by signing up, you’ll be in the loop. The next event will be a Local Favorites tasting with Whole Foods Market in August. You’ll be able to taste some of the delicious local products Whole Foods carries and learn how you can easily incorporate local products into your lifestyle + why it’s important.

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