By Amanda Rohwedder. Adapted from the original Family Foundations article.
…yet, in bestowing his goodness, he did not leave himself without witness, for he gave you rains from heaven and fruitful seasons, and filled you with nourishment and gladness for your hearts.Acts 14:17
I recently finished reading The Ruthless Elimination of Hurry and it seemed a timely reminder about meal preparation. I have found that time spent preparing meals in my home kitchen, as well as eating as seasonally as possible, are key opportunities to slow down and savor the present. The benefits of incorporating seasonal produce into your meal planning are numerous, among them higher nutritional value and lower prices (ever important with current inflation trends). Plus, those ingredients simply taste better – berries are sweeter in the summer, apples are juicier in the fall, beets are more floral in the winter, and peas are most flavorful in the spring.
What I find most interesting is the nutrients of the produce in season typically match what our bodies need most at that time. For example, much of the fruits and vegetables that grow from October through February are high in the antioxidant vitamin C, which is a key component in boosting immunity. Colder temperatures tend to have a negative effect on our immune system function, so it follows that the produce in season serves to enhance that more necessary function.
Another common nutrient found in fall and winter seasonals are the B vitamins. These vitamins help to increase energy and enhance mood. With less daytime hours this time of year, it is common to feel more sluggish and have more depressed moods. Find B vitamins in abundance this season in citrus, sweet potatoes, kale, and collard greens, Check out the peak produce picks section in this article, which highlights some of the nutritional benefits of select fall and early winter produce.
Eating more seasonally also helps us to fully embrace the natural rhythms of our lives and, in a way, connects us more deeply to creation. It is much like embracing the rhythm of your fertility – once you have an understanding of it, then you can view that particular season’s harvest as beautiful and good and it naturally becomes a part of your daily life, routine, and even conversations. Why don’t we celebrate this time of year with its chilly temps and family holidays by slowing down and truly savoring the season?
Peak Produce Picks Key Nutritional Benefits
- Squash Good source of magnesium, calcium, and fiber
- Carrots Good source of antioxidant beta-carotene, fiber, vitamin K1, and potassium
- Citrus Good source of antioxidant vitamin C, B vitamins, and micronutrients
- Pears Good source of insoluble fiber and rich in vitamin C, potassium, and essential mineral copper
- Sweet Potatoes Good source of vitamins A, B6, and C, potassium, and fiber
Fertility Science Institute offers Lifestyle resources, classes and coaching sessions to help with nutrition, wellness and fertility. In a partnership with Amanda Rohwedder, we have a series of selfpaced healthy cooking classes which can be found on our website here. Check them out!
Amanda is a degreed nutritionist, with a B.S. Nutritional Science and M.S. Medical Science with a concentration in Women’s Health. She founded Temple and Table as a way to nourish our culture by drawing a connection between physical and spiritual health. For more information, visit templeandtable.com.