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            Have you ever really thought about where your food comes from?  Whether you have or not, I recommend reading the book Animal, Vegetable, Miracle by Barbara Kingsolver.  Animal, Vegetable, Miracle by Barbara Kingsolver takes you on a year long journey through eating off of the land.  She walks you through the experience every step of the way and allows you to truly appreciate the majesty of Mother Nature while discussing the current issues of our food system.

            Recently, our nation has been dramatically concerned with the rising prices of fuel.  Many of us try to cut back in our driving by taking closer vacations and carpooling or taking public transportation.  But have you ever noticed how the food in your kitchen plays a part?  Consider the California tomatoes you purchase, they travel thousands of miles using a great amount of fuel and energy to keep them “fresh.”  I expect that there are truly fresh tomatoes at a farmers market within 20 miles from your home.  Try the local tomatoes.  Even in the grocery store, if you have the choice between apples from a neighboring state and apples from a far away country, choose the one more local.

            Not only does choosing local foods help reduce the negative impact on our environment, fresher food tastes better.  When I was a little girl, my grandmother had a raspberry bush in her backyard.  I used to eat the berries right as soon as they were ripe.  To this day I have not tasted a raspberry with so much flavor.  I long for those raspberries.  To me, they are the epitome of summer.  The book includes several recipes to help you take advantage of produce that is in season, which you can find at www.animalvegetablemiracle.com.

            This book also further instilled in me the desire to know exactly what I am putting in my body.  Studies have shown that free-range eggs and commercial eggs have significantly different nutritional properties.  The same goes for beef.  The information in this book and other research I’ve done has pushed me to make sure that my food does not contain added hormones or genetically modified ingredients. 

            I’ve come to the conclusion that it’s best to leave plants and animals as God intended them.  What a concept.  At the end of the day, you are what you eat: a hormonally injected and genetically modified being or fresh, local flavor.

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