The Chinese people have a deeper understanding of eating seasonally than any other country. As early as more than two thousand years ago, the educator Confucius said in the Analects, “No seasonal food, no eating.”
China is a farming nation. The ancients’ observation of nature was meticulous and keenly aware. That’s why they had the twenty-four solar terms that guide farmland labor, and they also understood the importance of conforming to nature. They know that living things, including animals and plants, must conform to nature in order to make the most of their life.
They know that to grow crops is to plant them in spring, let them grow in summer, harvest them in autumn, and store them in winter. Vegetables and fruits also have their natural ripening seasons, and fish also have their best and greatest time to grow. For the ancients, the seasonal eating diet seems to be very simple, meaning that they eat fruits, vegetables, and meat that are ripe in seasons.
What are the benefits of eating seasonally?
Maximum nutrition and best taste: If you have eaten off-season watermelon, you know how delicious the seasonal watermelon is. Simply put, the substances in off-season fruits are also against nature, let alone how nutritious they are.
Good quality and low price: A large number of produced, and naturally mature products, let people spend the least money to get the best food.
Environmental protection: Avoiding long-distance transportation and off-season planting investment, the contribution of low-carbon behavior to environmental protection is undoubtedly huge.
Modern industrial production and long-distance transportation make modern people no longer know what food for eating seasonally.
Let us follow the Chinese traditions of the ancients to get a seasonal food guide.
Food in spring (January to March of Lunar calendar)
Vegetables: green pepper, color pepper, onion, cauliflower, sweet beans, peas, celery, lettuce, shepherd’s purse, rape, spinach, Chinese toon, bamboo shoots, Malan head, bottle gourd, leek.
Food in summer (April to June by Lunar calendar)
Vegetables: loofah, balsam gourd, winter gourd, kidney bean, asparagus, water bamboo, onion, cucumber, gourd, pumpkin, amaranth, asparagus, water spinach, asparagus, asparagus, bamboo shoots, lettuce, tomato, cabbage, eggplant.
Food in Autumn (July to September lunar calendar)
Vegetables: okra, water chestnut, lotus root, pepper, chestnut, wax gourd, kidney beans, melon leaves, beans, yam, Chinese cabbage, lentils.
Food in Winter (October to December of Lunar Calendar)
Vegetables: green pepper, cabbage, cabbage, onion, cauliflower, carrot, radish, sweet bean, celery, spinach, mustard, sunflower cabbage, and lettuce.