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Guidelines for Healthy Food – 8 questions you should ask your grocer or local farmer

Guidelines for Healthy Food  –  8 questions you should ask your grocer or local farmer

Whatever food you’re looking to eat, whether organic or locally grown, from either your local supermarket or a farmer’s market, the following are signs of a high-quality, healthy food. Most often, the best place to find these foods is from a sustainable agricultural group in your area.   Below are some questions you can ask your local produce manager or farmer:

It’s grown without pesticides and chemical fertilizers (organic foods fit this description, but so do some non-organic foods)

It’s not genetically engineered

It contains no added growth hormones, antibiotics, or other drugs

It does not contain artificial anything, nor any preservatives

It is fresh (if you have to choose between wilted organic produce or fresh conventional produce, the latter may still be the better option as freshness is important for optimal nutrient content)

It was not grown in a factory farm

It is grown with the laws of nature in mind (meaning animals are fed their native diets, not a mix of grains and animal byproducts, and have free-range access to the outdoors)

It is grown in a sustainable way (using minimal amounts of water, protecting the soil from burnout, and turning animal wastes into natural fertilizers instead of environmental pollutants)

I always encourage my patients to try to eat healthy, organic foods as well as support local small business and farmers.  Farmers know what they put into their crops as well as what chemicals they use to help maintain their growing season.  I employ you to ask these questions when at your local farmers market to get a better understanding of what you’re buying and more importantly, what you are ingesting.  It is hard, and expensive to eat organic, but it is easy to avoid foods with a high pesticide and chemical content.  As always, do the best you can within your means.  If you do, you will enjoy a healthier and happier lifestyle.

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