What if you could make a simple lifestyle change that in one fell swoop, would dramatically enhance your intake of micronutrients and protect you from toxins? What if this simple change also increased the amount of joy in your life? What if it also supported your local economy, and bolstered food security for your whole community? It sounds like a tall order, but it’s not. One simple lifestyle change is really that powerful.

The “Locavore Movement” is in the news these days, and it is here to stay. This is no fad. It’s a revolution, destined to change the way we get our nutrition, and the way our local food systems function. Why? Simply because it makes sense at so many levels, and brings so many benefits to our bodies, and even, surprisingly, to our souls.

Did you know that most produce grown in the US is picked 4-7 days before being placed on supermarket shelves? And, it is shipped an average of 1500 miles to get there? It gets even more extreme when we look at the food on our supermarket shelves that comes from foreign sources, such as Mexico, Asia, Canada and South America, which often travels more than 3000 miles to end up on our plate! Is it still fresh? No, of course not. Is it harvested at its nutritional peak? Nowhere close.

The problem for most consumers was that, until recently, it was nearly impossible to avoid this situation. We have been dependent on imported food from far-flung places, harvested too early, and stored and transported under who-knows-what conditions. Sara Bongiorni, mother of three and author of A Year Without Made in China, found it nearly impossible to even detect foods that had Chinese-sourced ingredients, since labeling laws permit food manufacturers to get by without listing all their sources.

What is the driver behind all this? Simple economics. We aren’t importing food from overseas because it is of higher quality; we are importing it because it saves us a few dollars, and in some cases, just a few cents. In our zeal to save money on what is perhaps our single most important expense – the food that sustains and nourishes our bodies — it is wise to bear in mind that only 1% of the food arriving from overseas is inspected by the FDA. Is it any wonder that we hear of new, tainted food scandals seemingly every other week?