The great benefits of grapes!

For all of you grape-lovers out there, here are some interesting facts that will make you love grapes even more!

Grapes have an extensive list of health benefits, especially for your heart. This is largely due to an antioxidant found in the skin of grapes, resveratrol. This potent phytochemical functions to protect your DNA from oxidative stress damage caused by free radicals. In doing so, your cardiovascular system is protected. Other functions of resveratrol include maintenance of normal blood pressure levels, support of blood vessel elasticity, normal healthy lipids and circulation, maintenance of ideal body weight, prevention of Alzheimer’s Disease, inhibit the spread of cancer, and prevention of the spread of irregular cell activity.

Another essential component can be found in the seeds of a grape. The seeds include an antioxidant named proanthocyanidin, which assists in lowering ones blood pressure, as well as prevention of diseases such as leukemia, skin cancer, and obesity. In addition, grape seeds have been found to improve blood circulation, joint flexibility, and elasticity of body tissues and arteries.

If you would like to read more in depth about this topic, please visit the following articles:

Also, make sure to stop by one of our vendors, such as Windy Acres Farm, to purchase some grapes. They’re finally in season!

Hope you all have a wonderful 4th of July!

– Sarah, Food & Nutrition Associate

Habits Formed At Harvest Market

9102550647_927325b234Have you noticed that when you have a good habit formed after a period of time that you start strutting around like a rooster letting everybody know?:)  Such as “I have been smoke free for two weeks” or “Did you know I have lost 15 pounds since I started…” or “I have been saving money by shopping at such and such a place”.  There is pride in your voice, a swagger in your walk, and you know primarily it is due to that you are excited about this change and trying to motivate yourself to keep it going!

Here at the Harvest Market we are no different.  We are starting to nestle down into our 9102548489_c8b3390b8froutine of where to go, how to set-up, and distinguishing the “regulars”. Even those of us staffing or volunteering have started the habit of getting our muffin in the morning, picking up our eggs at the end of the day, the hotdog for lunch, and those special groceries to last in between markets.

So we encourage you to develop your good habits this summer, whether it is setting aside some of your existing budget to buying more locally and/or healthily, or to just start with one local vendor and always buy your greens, doing yoga every morning, check on your blood pressure each week, or trying one thing new at a different booth.  Whatever makes you walk straight, stand tall and go back to home, work, or Facebook and say “Guess what?  I have been going to the Harvest Market for x amount of weeks and I have been getting/doing …..”

Just start doing it:)

9102545495_8c1de95e04This Week at the Market:

Real Grass-fed Beef!

Hello!

A few markets ago I gathered some interesting information from our beef vendors, CC Angus Beef, LLC. I am sure many of you market-goers have conversed with Don and Marilyn, and have been educated first hand about their methods of raising their cattle. For those of you who have not, please allow me to share.

CC Angus Beef, LLC guarantees that their cattle are 100% grass-fed. However, there are many farmers out there who feed corn silage to their animals during the winter months. Corn silage is an alternative forage for ruminant animals. Many farmers feed this to their cattle to fatten them up. On the other hand, real grass-fed beef is much leaner as compared to corn-fed. Genuinely grass-fed beef is typically free of harmful chemicals and has higher amounts CLA (conjugated linoleic acid), Omega-3 fatty acids, and Vitamins A, B, and E. According to Dr. Joseph Mercola of Arlington Heights, higher amounts of CLA can assist losing weight and preventing cancer.

CC Angus Beef, LLC ensures that their cattle is 100% grass-fed by producing hay to be fed during the winter months or during a drought. Don and Marilyn go out of their way to guarantee great flavor and tenderness of their meat by a method called dry age. This process requires that the carcass is hung for 21 days in a humidity and temperature-controlled environment. An enzymatic effect occurs to prevent the carcass from rotting, as well as a lot of weight is lost causing the meat to be much lighter and leaner. This flavor enhancing technique helps to makes CC Angus Beef, LLC’s meat well worth the cost.

If you have not already stopped by Don and Marilyn’s tent, I strongly recommend you to pay them a visit! Not only will you be introduced to 100% grass-fed beef, but you will definitely learn a thing or two about their approach to producing beef products. They will even share with you the appropriate method in cooking their products and some fantastic recipes.

For more information, do not hesitate to visit Don and Marilyn at the market or visit their website which includes their contact information: http://ccangus.com/

Also, for those of you who wish to look further into this subject be sure sure to check out this great article, “Discover How Your Beef is Really Raised”, by famous author, Michael Pollan:

http://articles.mercola.com/sites/articles/archive/2002/04/17/cattle1.aspx

or watch this wonderful documentary called Food, inc.:

http://documentaryaddict.com/Food+Inc-2174-documentary.html

See you all next this Thursday! 🙂

– Sarah, Food and Nutrition Associate