Summer is here and it’s a perfect time to enjoy some of the healthy, nutritious, local foods available to us. Local foods tend to be fresher, are seasonal and taste better. Here are ten ways to eat locally this summer:
- Learn what is in season for your area
- Shop at a Farmers Market
- Join a CSA (community supported agriculture)
- Shop at stores that label food origins
- Shop the perimeter of the grocery store
- Plant a garden
- Visit farm stands or U-picks
- Choose restaurants that source locally
- Shop at locally-owned food producers (bakeries, etc.)
- Buy family-farmed products when local is unavailable
Not sure if there is a farmer’s market in your neighborhood? Go to the Mass Farmers Markets website, insert your zip code and you’ll find a nearby farmer’s market to visit.
Here are some delicious and nutritious seasonal foods that grow in Massachusetts over the summer. Give them a try!
June: Corn, Strawberries
July: Cherries, Raspberries, Zucchini, Tomatoes
August: Nectarines, Apples, Watermelon
The SMArt Kids learned all about shopping and eating locally at our June SMA. Under Linda Germaine-Miller’s guidance, they used fresh ingredients to make a Caprese salad. Linda, our SMArt Kids nutritionist, introduced the group to various herbs and how to eat them, use them and even plant them! Each SMArt Kid carried home a fresh parsley plant and an herb kit to plant, both perfect ingredients for seasonal recipes in July and August.
At this final SMA before summer vacation, we welcomed and congratulated an energetic group of participants who have been consistent and diligent with meeting their monthly goals, attending monthly sessions and supporting each other since the Fall. The majority of our SMArt Kids have reduced their BMIs since they joined our group, and most plan to return in the Fall to continue working on their goals. The SMArt Kids team applauds our participants and their families for all of their hard work and dedication.
Remember these important SMArt goals over the summer:
- Limit screen time to less than 2 hours per day (get outside and ride your bike!)
- Participate in at least 1 hour of active play (Hot? go for a swim!)
- Limit sugary drinks to 0-4 ounces per day (add some lemon slices to your water)
- Eat at least 5 servings of fruits and vegetables per day (try something in season)
- Limit fast food to less than once per week (ask mom and dad to grill instead)
- Make breakfast a priority (add some fresh berries to your cereal)
- Choose healthy snacks (Caprese salad, anyone?)
- Plan for family meals (take a family picnic)
- Get enough restful sleep (it’s vacation…no excuses)
- Know where your food comes from (shop at a farmer’s market)
Keep up the SMArt work, SMArt Kids! We are looking forward to hearing about your ongoing successes in September!