Why bother getting your produce from your local Farmer’s Market?
- It’s fun for one!
- You’re getting fresh + seasonal produce for two.
- And you can ask the farmer herself for any juicy details for three.
Buying produce directly from the farmer ensures that the produce was recently picked. This is golden! Your produce should have as few days as possible between being picked and landing on your plate. Many nutrients are not very stable and after several days of being picked will be completely lost. For example B vitamins found in Romain lettuce and Kale will only be present for about 3 days.
You’re also more likely to get heirloom varieties of produce. This gives you veggies that are often more nutritious because they have not been bred to be sweet and pretty. Apples, tomatoes and carrots are a good examples of this.
Aside from getting nutritious produce, shopping at the Farmer’s Market will give you the power to buy produce that is grown chemical free. You’re probably thinking, “Simple, I’ll buy organic.” Nope. Wrong answer.
Here’s the scoop
Organic produce may very well be what we’ve been led to believe that the organic label insures. Which is: grown without chemicals and synthetic pesticides. But it’s often not the case when shopping at big grocery stores who’s produce comes from large scale ‘organic’ agri-biz farms.
The truth is that USDA Organic allows for the use of a subset of organic pesticides that are equally as dangerous to consume as conventional pesticides.
BUT FEAR NOT! Pesticides are not needed for all crops and not all organic farmer’s use them.
So what do I do?
Get your produce from the farmer’s market and ask the farmer the right questions. You don’t need to look for USDA Certified Organic farms – many authentically chemical free farms are too small to deal with the red tape and costs involved with getting certified.
Look for smaller stands that have smaller, more natural looking veggies (those gargantuan looking veggies are often a warning sign!) Trust your senses!
Next ask the following
– Do you use any chemical, even organic, pesticides or synthetic fertilizers?
If the answer is ‘no’ – then if you’re curious ask:
– Do you use compost, horse or cow manure? (These are all good natural fertilizers and natural pest control that will ensure healthy, nutrient dense plants.)
If they admit using a synthetic fertilizer – walk away. That’s all you need to know. Chemical fertilizers produce plants that look like the veggie you want, but contain very few nutrients.
If the answer is that they use organic pesticides ask:
– On which produce?
Usually pesticides are only applied to a few crops. Most likely eggplant, sometimes peppers, greens and a smattering of other crops.
You’ll know a good farm when they actively engage with you in this conversation. A good farmer will proudly share her practices. If they’re defensive, you don’t likely want their produce!
Why is this most important for juicing?
When you juice, everything except for the fiber is concentrated and nearly immediately absorbed by the body. Because of the absence of fiber, all the nutrients go directly into your blood stream and are circulated and instantly bioavailable to all your vital organs. A direct shot of minerals and vitamins, right where you need them! If chemicals are present your body’s chelating defenses may be compromised, and those chemicals too will be delivered right to your organs. Not the desired effect!
Another key element to keep in mind when juicing
You should consume fresh juices on an empty belly. It’s important that you don’t have other undigested foods in your stomach and that you don’t add any whole foods to your stomach while the juice it’s making it’s way through.
Fresh juice is so high in enzymes and so low in fiber, that it’s sped through the digestive system like an instantaneous nutrient delivery system. Which is what makes juicing so vital!
When you have other foods in your stomach the juice will be held up there too while the other foods are being digested. This causes the beautiful nutrient rich juice to putrefy, the nutrients to go to waste and may possibly cause you to bloat or feel sluggish.
Try this yummy blood purifying juice recipe >
Finally, knowledge is power. Anxiety is counter productive.
Do your best, but try not to get stressed!
If you can’t get your produce from a farmer you trust, just be grateful and pat yourself on the back for mainting a healthy diet rich in fresh produce. Eat as many colorful fruits and veggies as you can, remember that they will always have much to offer your body. Relish in their succulent beauty. It’s proven that an attractive, colorful plate signals to the body that nutrients are present and so they are better absorbed by the body.
Get in the habit of GRACE. Fundamentally all things have a vibration. Be grateful, bestow your food with grace and it will be reciprocated with good health.