22 Awesome Things- FoodHave you ever caught yourself at lunch with friends, chatting about what you’re having for dinner that night? At Eastmark, we know that sometimes there is nothing better than sitting down with family or friends to enjoy a delicious, savory meal. Studies have shown that food can contribute to happiness – eating can actually make us happy!

From Huffpost Healthy Living
Eat for Happiness: 5 Rules to simplify your choices and maximize brain health

1. Skip the processed food: Processed foods are filled with empty calories and nutritional deficiencies that negatively affect energy, your mood, even your thought processes. Instead, focus your snacking on fruits, veggies, and other fresh options full of brain healthy nutrients that won’t spike your blood sugar levels.

2. Go organic: Avoid foods grown with insecticides and pesticides. If you are on a budget and need to prioritize your organic purchases, use the “Dirty Dozen” to help clean up your diet. The Dirty Dozen lists the 12 foods that are the most likely to be contaminated if you don’t buy organic – including strawberries, peaches, spinach, lettuce, and more.

3. Don’t fear fats: Trans fats in many packaged foods are still among the unhealthiest around but the omega-3 fats DHA and EPA, which are found in foods like fish, are great for your brain. Studies show that these fats help protect against mood disorders.

4. Mind your meat: Meat is brain food. Protein rich sources of omega-3 fats DHA and EPA, along with CLA, are associated with fighting cancer.

5. Make friends with farmers: Shop local. Getting to know the people who grow your food offers you the opportunity to gain a better understanding of what you’re eating.

How can you get started?
Eat local!

You may have heard the term Farm-to-table or Farm-to-Fork. This refers to a movement of producing food locally and delivering the food to the local consumer. Food is best when it’s fresh. Farm to Fork encourages you to swap over-processed food for local, natural products.

There are several farms close to Eastmark where you can enjoy fresh, locally grown foods:

  • Superstition Farm
  • Van Rijn Dairy
  • Schnepf Farms
  • Queen Creek Olive Mill
  • Vertuccio Farms

Check out the Farmers Markets in the area too: Gilbert, Power Road, Superstition Ranch, and Queen Creek.

Additionally, there are several local restaurants that offer a Farm to Fork experience. Try out Joe’s Farm Grill, The Spot, The Cutting Board or Café 8.

22-Awesome-Things--Spring-ThumbnailWhat else do you think is awesome? Check out our previous post – we think the spring season is awesome.

Why 22 things? Learn more about the 22 Awesome Things series in our kick-off blog. And join us for The Eastmark AwesomeFest on April 18th!