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Natural Awakenings Charlotte

Thought for Food

Oct 07, 2009 08:21AM
When’s the last time you took a long, scenic drive across the country? For me, it’s been years. But for the broccoli I recently bought, it was just last week. This makes me both a) jealous, cause I’ve always wanted to visit Missouri and b) pretty darned peeved cause the last time I checked we do have dirt and tractors here. (Even sexy, hot pink ones.)

In the US, the average grocery store’s produce travels nearly 1500 miles between the farm it was grown and your refrigerator. So why is it that I can’t get fresh food from my nearby grocer? Because retailers can source food from wherever it is cheapest around the globe at the touch of a computer key. This food, well on its way to losing its nutritional value, is then trucked across the country, hauled in freighter ships over oceans or flown around the world. Two words sum up my opinion on that: oil and pollution.

What’s the alternative to this nonsense? Buying local. By purchasing from area farmers, we not only support the local economy, but their dedication to the art of working the land. Plus, much local fare is organically grown and tastes far better than the rubbery broccoli that was sprayed with pesticides and deported from Idaho. So support our local farmers and we’ll all feel better. And if you must buy at the store, go organic. Which leads me to another issue…

Oftentimes when I proudly present my nutritious produce to the young, freckled face cashiers at my neighborhood store I get the same reaction. They will pick up my brussell sprouts or parsnips, hold them away from them like a mutant alien baby and ask with furrowed brows,” What IS this?”  To which I reply,” Didn’t your mom ever make you sit at the table until you ate all your vegetables?”  I am constantly amazed at how little kids know about food these days.

It’s unfortunate that our society has become so fast-paced that we often don’t have the time to select, prepare and enjoy our food. We depend on the life force energy from our food to fuel our bodies, elevate our mood and keep us balanced. It’s time we started eating to live instead of living to eat.

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