By Dennis Thompson
(HealthDay News) -- Why buy local? When you're talking foods, the reasons are plentiful, according to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. For starters:
Pre-packaged foods, fast food and soft drinks require significant processing, which means they use large amounts of materials and energy.
To that end, the CDC suggests what's commonly called "eating lower on the food chain" -- decreasing the amount of meat and other animal products you eat while increasing consumption of fruits and vegetables.
Purchasing locally grown produce, whether from a farmer's market or a traditional supermarket, it says, cuts energy consumption by requiring less transportation, and thus less fuel, to get the food to the dinner table.
Processed foods tend to be high in fat, sugar and calories so eating too much of such foods can contribute to weight gain and lead to health problems.
But interest in locally grown and raised foods also ties into the larger picture of global climate changes and the desire of individuals, families and communities to make adjustments that might make a difference.
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