Welcome to my ever-expanding blog site. I trust you are enjoying your day. I invite you to browse the site, read the articles and enjoy my photography. Your opinion counts, so please leave a comment at the end of the posts. If you enjoy reading these blogs, feel free to pass the link on to any friends you think would also enjoy it.

The purpose of this blog site is 3-fold: a place for sharing general information, a place to share about spiritual matters that will help move us toward a healthier inner life and a place where I can talk about my business and the products that can help us experience better health.

Check out my web site and learn about the benefits of reishi mushroom and ginseng in Healthy Coffee International products. Feel free to e-mail me if you have any questions.

Thank you for dropping by. I trust you will consider your visit worthwhile. This site is a 'work in progress', sometimes changing by the minute, so come back soon to see what's new on MY HEALTHY LIVING BLOG.

God bless you today and every day. Remember, "A joyful heart is good medicine" (Proverbs 17:22-NASB). Blessings and health to you and yours.


Note: Unless otherwise noted, all photos on this blog taken by Diane Stephenson

Monday, August 17, 2009


I don't know about you, but I love fresh fruit and vegetables. No, I'm not a vegan. I do like meat, too, but I don't eat a great deal of it. I eat salmon once a week, and usually choose chicken over beef or pork, though occasionally I do indulge in a pork chop or rump roast. And in the summer I consume much more produce than in the winter when it's imported.

How much thought do you put into buying 'fresh' fruit and veggies? I use quotes around fresh to distinguish it from canned, frozen or otherwise processed foods. It all depends, of course, on where you live. In winter months in the colder climates it is impossible to have really fresh foods. There is no choice but to buy imported. But during the growing season, do you opt for the easy way by shopping for all your produce at the supermarket? Do you look carefully to see if they are local or imported? Or does it even matter to you?

I realize that it takes more time to search for roadside stands where everything is freshly picked. And the ability to choose presupposes you have transportation to these country locations. But it is worth the time and effort even if you have to ask someone to drive you.

On the weekend I picked up a friend and we drove to a couple of local beaches so that I could do some photography for my blogs. We stopped at a roadside stand on the way home. My mouth watered to see so much fresh, delicious-looking fruits and veggies: cantaloupe, watermelon, peas, wax beans, peaches and cream corn, strawberries, new potatoes, etc. I usually have a difficult time to contain myself around all this wonderful produce. I want to buy a little of everything, then realize I cannot possibly eat it all before it spoils. Some items in the above photo came from this stand.

Freshly picked fruits and vegetables contain optimum nutrients. If you use them soon after you buy them, then you will benefit greatly from this difference alone. But the difference in taste is also worth the trip. Nothing tastes so good to me as a freshly-picked field tomato with a little sea salt sprinkled on it. Mmm...Delicious!

There are other benefits to buying from local farmers. You can relax and enjoy the ride into the country. Make it a family event and spend quality time with those you love. That is not always easy to find in today's busy world. At some farms you can even pick your own, so you will benefit from the exercise and fresh air as well. It could be a very good stress-buster. And lots of fun!

Speaking of benefits, when you buy from local farmers you are supporting them in their endeavor to continue farming. With so much imported goods today, it is becoming more and more difficult for them to hold on to their farms. It is a shame to see so many of them being forced into taking an 'outside' job just to make ends meet.

According to one survey, 86% of Canadians like to buy local. Then why so little of it in the big supermarkets? Why, when local strawberries are available, do I usually see only those imported from the US in the stores? Now, I'm sure there is nothing wrong with strawberries grown in California or Florida when they are eaten in California or Florida. But for export they are picked before they ripen, so do not benefit from as much soil nutrient as when ripened on the plant, and they do not get as much sunshine either. They have traveled thousands of miles and are stored for a short time (I hope) in a warehouse before being shipped to the stores. How much flavor can they really have? I admit, if you just cannot live without strawberries, they are better than nothing in the middle of winter. But personally I would rather wait until June and buy berries that have been picked within the past couple of hours.

If you are interested to know more about the impact of buying local produce, I would encourage you to watch this video. Keep the 'fresh' in fresh produce. And choose to eat green, eat real food, eat local for the ultimate in healthy living.

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