Dieticians are now recommending that certain foods should be avoided during the winter. Eating the right foods can be difficult. Some people might be proud of themselves for getting nutrients from vegetables, but now health professionals are suggesting that some fruits and vegetables should be avoided at certain times. Specifically, they advocate for avoiding out of season produce.
During long shipping processes “natural sugars begin to break down… Vitamins and minerals also disappear.” This means that out of season produce actually contain less nutrients than the same produce eaten in season. Additionally, there are more foods to avoid during the winter. Because people are more susceptible to illnesses during the winter time, they should avoid foods that can contribute to illness like colds or the flu. These foods include sugar, dairy products, and spicy foods such as peppers.
While it might be tempting to consume comfort foods that are high in fat or carbohydrates during the winter months Trishna Joshi, a nutritionist, argues that stay healthy, people should be consuming winter produce that is in season. There are many benefits to this including higher levels of nutrients, better flavors, and cheaper prices.
Avoiding sugars, dairy, and spicy foods in the winter is a must because of how they can influence symptoms of a cold or the flu. However, other foods should be avoided during the winter. The following provides a list of five fruits and vegetables that should be avoided until they are in season:
Asparagus – A light green color helps to identify vegetables that are in season in the spring. Darker greens tend to be in season during the winter. Spinach might make a great alternative.
Heirloom Tomatoes – These tomatoes are out of season in most of North America during the wintertime so people might notice a lack of juiciness or flavor. Again, this is because shipping can cause a break down in fruit sugars. Try canned chunks or tomato sauces instead.
Corn – Try canned corn instead of fresh corn during the winter months. Since corn plants do not produce during the winter, shoppers who buy fresh corn on the cob during this time might be getting left over crops from the previous season.
Strawberries – Strawberry plants can produce in the fall, summer, and spring, but avoid strawberries during the winter until they come into season. Maybe reach for some grapes instead.
Peaches – Fresh winter peaches might have a mealy texture, so nutritionists suggest heading for the aisle with the frozen peaches.
The previous are foods that should be avoided in the winter. Now, a few suggestions for produce that should be eaten during the cold and snowy months. A few recommendations are: beets, carrots, broccoli, cauliflower, oatmeal, soups and stews, and salmon. Root vegetables are in season in the winter and tend to make hearty meals. Broccoli and cauliflower are high in vitamin C and oatmeal is high in zinc, both of these can help fight off a cold. Soups and stews are great hot meals for cold weather, as long as they do not have too much salt or dairy. Since the winter days tend to see less sun, salmon, which is high in vitamin D can be a great choice for lunch or dinner.
By Emilee Prado
Photo by Irina Souiki – Flickr License