According to the CDC, only 10% of adults in the US are consuming adequate vegetables and only 12% are consuming adequate fruits. Shopping at a farmers market is a great way to get fresh tasting produce and mix up your fruit and vegetable routine.
Why Eat Seasonally?
One of the best things about getting produce from the farmers market is the great taste. There is nothing like the taste of a crisp apple in the fall. Beyond the flavor, shopping at a farmers market is a great way to engage with your community and try new foods.
Research shows affordability of fruits and vegetables can be a barrier to eating them regularly. If you are worried about the cost of foods at a farmers market, remember that you can use SNAP benefits there. The Healthy Incentives Program (HIP) even gives you cash back on your EBT card if you purchase produce. You may also be eligible for the farmers market coupon program in Boston.
What is in Season in New England During Early Fall?
There are many health benefits of consuming fruits and vegetables. They are loaded with vitamins, minerals, and other antioxidants. For example, pumpkins contain vitamin C, copper, fiber, and beta-carotene. Beta-carotene is part of the carotenoid family, a group of antioxidants that may offer protection for your heart.
Pumpkins can be delicious in both sweet and savory recipes. Try a savory pumpkin stuffed with your favorite vegetables, rice, and cheese if you want something hearty and savory. Follow along with this recipe here.
Lee SH, Moore LV, Park S, Harris DM, Blanck HM. Adults Meeting Fruit and Vegetable Intake Recommendations — United States, 2019. Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report. 2022; 71:1–9.
Miller V, Yusuf S, Chow CK, Mente A. et al. Availability, Affordability, and Consumption of Fruits and Vegetables in 18 Countries Across Income Levels: Findings from the Prospective Urban Rural Epidemiology (PURE) Study. Lancet Glob Health. 2016; 4(10): e695-703.
Xavier AA, Pérez-Gálvez A. Carotenoids as a Source of Antioxidants in the Diet. Subcell Biochem. 2016; 79:359-75.
By Abigail Harrison, MS
MGH Dietetic Intern