Tag Archives: Local food

Hillcrest Farmers Market

With summer comes an onslaught of Farmer’s Markets. From coast to coast there are streets lined with tents and under those tents is some of the freshest, tastiest, local produce you’ve ever had. Our new neighborhood, Hillcrest, is no exception.

I’ve written about Farmer’s Markets before and while the one is Peoria is pretty awesome, our new local market is spectacular. The area is rife with crazies like us, all looking for raw, vegetarian, organic, blah-blah-blah and these vendors supply some of the best health food I’ve ever had.

One of my favorite things about farmer’s markets is the ambience. They’re usually on the weekend and people usually aren’t in much of a hurry. They’re there to taste, peruse, and barter for the local flavor. Ours are held on Sundays and that is when I’ll be doing ALL my grocery shopping. So check out your local Market this weekend, you might be surprised by how much you enjoy it.

StrawbsShopping is a joy when you can taste and buy strawberries like these.

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Produce: To Buy Organic or Not?

I had a realization last night that I really want this blog to be about staying healthy with no time OR money. I think I’ve done pretty well with the no time but where’s the money guidance Ashley!? Where is it?

Organic produce: SUPER expensive but sometimes it’s really worth it. Here’s an easy to follow list of rules when buying produce. Or anything really.

Rule #1: If it’s available, buy LOCAL – this is because the closer you can get to where your food is produced, the more you can be comfortable that it’s not grown with any pesticides or other crappy chemicals. Also, the shorter the shipping distance, the more nutrients left when it hits your mouth. And you’re supporting your local economy! Here’s a guide to see if your community offers the best thing for local produce, farmer’s markets.

Rule #2: If it’s available, buy ORGANIC – again, chemicals (such as pesticides) are bad in food and very bad in your body. Get that stuff out of there! Also, non organic produce is often genetically modified and much lower in nutrients. [According to a study done by Stanford, link here, there are no more nutrients in organic food than conventionally grown. However, there is a strong but so far unstudied likelihood that the presence of pesticides affects your body so much that it is not able to absorb all the nutrients in the produce.]  If you’re gonna eat an apple, might as well get all the good you can out of it, right?

Rule #3: If organic is too expensive or there’s a limited selection, follow the list of the CLEAN FIFTEEN and DIRTY DOZEN. The Environmental Working Group (EWG) puts out this awesome list every year of the cleanest and dirtiest produce on the market that year. If it’s on the clean fifteen, it has very few pesticides and isn’t a huge harm to your body. If it’s on the dirty dozen, only buy it organic because conventional farmers basically bathe it in a chemical bath.

^This is a great pocket guide you can download from the website but you should definitely check it out in all it’s glory. Here’s the link. I am signed up for the newsletter (they don’t bombard your inbox like I do) and I got the app for my phone so I can have it whenever I’m at the market.

How is your market’s selection of organic produce? What has been your organic buying practice up to now?

Don’t forget to smile 🙂