A "food mile" is the distance a food travels from its growing source to where you buy it. In America, that average distance is approximately 1,500 miles. These miles not only increase the cost of the food, but also are costly to our environment. Long-haul trucking, refrigeration and packaging of foods demands large amounts of fossil fuels, which contributes to rising greenhouse gas emissions worldwide. The 100 Mile Diet is a phrase coined by Canadians James MacKinnon and Alisa Smith. This practice refers to the purchasing, consumption, or production of food all within a 100-mile radius from an individual’s residence, and is an experiment the duo performed back in 2005.
The purpose of following a "locavore" type diet is to reduce the carbon footprint on the environment and support the local economy and farming communities. Eating locally is gaining momentum with the rapid growth of Farmers' Markets and CSAs (Community Supported Agriculture). Here are a few great reasons to buy and eat locally:
- The food tastes better! A fresh tomato from the garden tastes a lot different than one shipped across the U.S. into the grocery store.
- The produce is fresher and higher in nutrients. Fruits and vegetables grown locally are allowed to ripen and mature naturally, instead of in a refrigerated truck.
- Eating locally supports the local economy and responsible land development.
- The less fuel used to get the food to your table, means you are conserving energy, reducing pollution and supporting our environment.
Take note of the foods you eat. Where do they come from? Conduct your own locavore experiment by joining a CSA or purchasing produce from Farmer's Markets this summer. You will improve your health and the health of our environment!
Coaching you to "Feel Better and Live Longer!",
Jody Anderson, RN, CHC
Succeed Health, LLC- Algoma